At the airport they are pretty much on their own to manage through security, find their plane, handle customs, etc. Luckily, we met two other elders at the airport that were also heading to Lima, so we were a little relieved knowing he wasn't alone and that they would figure it all out together. I didn't like the fact that he was whisked away into the security line and I was only able to give him a quick hug. Maybe it was better that way in the long run, but I had to hold back with all my might to not run through security to give him one last hug! Tate kept looking back to see if we were still there and waving. He was happy and determined, but I could see a little fear in his face. Two years is a long time to be away from family, friends, facebook, texting, girls, etc. It takes a lot of faith to leave everything you know and everyone you love and go to a strange land to preach the Gospel in a new and unfamiliar language. It takes a HUGE amount of courage.
I found a flight tracker online and followed his flight from LA to Peru until I knew it had safely landed. I think they invented flight tracker apps just for missionary moms! I had a hard time concentrating and paid for it the next day with the amount of homework I had to do!! Luckily, my professor extended the deadline and I had a couple of extra days to complete it. Tender mercies for sure!
I heard later in the day that his adventure started off with a bang! His flight from Salt Lake to Los Angeles was cancelled. Luckily they had a 6 hour layover in LA, so they had plenty of time to get to their plane headed to Lima. He arrived safely around 1:20 am the next day. I'm sure it was long and exhausting, but he is there at last.
He was allowed 2 minutes to send us an email to let us know that he was still alive and in Peru! Here is his email:
Hola from the MTC! I only get a couple minutes today. My P day will be next Wednesday. I will get an hour to write and read your email. This keyboard is weird. Food is great. My companion is the shiz. Love you all.
I will use this blog to post his emails each week. If you are interested in reading them, just subscribe on the "follow by email" link on the right by inputting your email address and hitting the submit button. You will automatically receive the updates in your email in-box.
Let the adventures begin!!