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Donnie McKinney

March 5 1:10 p.m.

I'm getting really excited about the trip with it being less than a week away. It seems like just yesterday that I just found out that I was going on this trip. I have not finished packing but I cannot wait to be on our way. I am really looking forward to seeing a place that is not so over run with technology. I think this is going to be an eye opening experience for me and I am so thankful to be going with you all. Let's go!!!

The trip ended up being much different than I expected it to be. We were planned to visit a lot of schools and other places associated with the United Methodist Church and I was a little unsure about how I felt about that. I didn't plan on this being a church oriented trip but a lot of it ended up being a lot cooler than I thought it would be. The schools were really eye opening. They were missing so many simple things like desks. Compared to what we have back home they literally had nothing. It was a ton of students for a few classrooms. (A lot of the kids had class outside because of lack of classroom space). We also visited a hospital and since I am involved in the health field I could not believe how little  the people had. Doctors, nurses, and physical therapists all had to deal with way more patients than they should have had to. the hospital had little equipment and a lot of what they did have they didn't know how to use. The whole experience just really opened my eyes to how fortunate I am to live in the United States. 
My favorite part of the trip was our one night stay in Xia-Xia. It was less of a cultural experience, because I think it was more of a touristy place to be, and more of a night off from the ruggedness of the real Mozambique. We had an amazing group dinner at a nearby hotel and everyone really let loose and had a great time. We stayed at the place we had dinner for almost two hours. It was really nice to see our group come together and be able to hang out as normal people and have fun. After dinner we went home and some of the youngsters went out to the beach and just enjoyed the beautiful African weather and each others company because it was really the only night that it was safe to go out at night. 
All in all the trip was much more than I expected. I honestly wasn't that excited about going to Mozambique when I first learned that that was where I was going but I am very happy that I did now. I couldn't have asked for a better group of people to be with on the trip. We all meshed together well, having great discussions and a lot of laughs along the way. I would take another trip again with these people any time.