I woke up early and got ready for the day. We were scheduled to go to the Beach and we had no idea what to expect and we discussed swimming at great length the night before. We finally decided to take our swimsuits and see how it went.
I knew we did not have enough Brazilian Real (currency) so I had to go to an ATM. Anna did not spring out of bed so I went downstairs to determine where an ATM was located. The clerk told me in halting English where to go and wrote down the name of the grocery I was looking for.
I started out and walked the two blocks she had indicated, but saw no store. There was an unopened diner/cafe on the corner so I went in and showed them the name and they told me to go one more block and then turn left and go another block. I did and found the store around the corner.
When I went in, I found 7 ATMs all in use. I waited and soon one was available so I used it and then started back to the hotel. I passed several people on the sidewalk, but I did not sense any danger and arrived back at the hotel to discover that Jamille and the translator were there an hour early.
I will never forget meeting Jamille for the first time. The translator took one look at me and said my name and I said yes. Jamille rushed up to me and threw her arms around me and hugged and hugged me, talking in Portuguese all the while. The translator told me she was so glad to meet me and that she could not believe I was there and how much I had blessed her. It was very emotional. She was crying, I was crying and the translator had tears in her eyes. Jamille is 22 and our translator was 18. At last I stepped back and told them I had to go get Anna.
I went to our room and told Anna to hurry that they were there. She was almost ready and came downstairs in just a few minutes. We went over the introductions again and she and Marina, our translator, and Jamille all really hit it off instantly.
We sat in the lobby and talked for a bit. Jamille asked some questions which I gladly answered and then the translator said we had to leave. She got up to get a taxi and soon we were on our way to the beach.
I could tell from Jamille’s welcome how special our relationship was and how blessed I was to be there for this important event in her life. It was very inspiring and touching.
I was very thankful I had decided to come. The translator told me she didn’t think I was coming and had only known for a very short time and how much it meant to her that I was there. She had known that other sponsors were coming for some of her classmates and she had been sad that I couldn’t come. Once she found out I was coming she was so happy.