Crossroads Mission Trip – Part 1 (Trekkin’ Down to FL)

I meant what I said and I said what I meant-I will recap this Crossroads trip no matter how long it takes.

We departed from Pittsburgh on Saturday, Feb. 27 around 4:30 PM. We had 22 total people–17 current Duquesne undergrads, one grad student, two former DU students (who formed one lovely married couple), and two adult leaders. We crammed into two vans; for those who are morally opposed to math, that’s 11 people in each van for about 20 hours, with a couple stops along the way. Oh man.

The trek down started fine, but when night crept in and it was time to give the drivers some quiet to concentrate on the roads, trouble started. In case you’ve never tried, it’s quite the challenge to sleep sitting in a van with 10 other people. I got about 45 minutes of sleep, and that didn’t come until around 5 AM Sunday. By seven, we were at our breakfast destination, Waffle House.
After grub, we piled back into the vans that we had named for to make things easier (our van was the DeLorean, from “Back to the Future”–the other van, the Millennium Falcon from “Star Wars.”) ¬†We were staying at a Girl Scout camp near our work site, but they weren’t ready for us to “check in” yet, so we spent a few hours playing frisbee at a nearby park. Amazing how long you can play frisbee for while running on less than an hour of sleep and an overload of McDonalds/Wendy’s.

When we got to the campsite and unpacked, I promptly fell asleep. Amazingly, though, I woke up feeling worse than I did before. Luckily, though, it was dinner time. We took turns making dinner during the week, and that night was spaghetti and meatballs, one of my favorites.

After dinner, we held our nightly worship session, which is where I started to think this trip was going to be more than I had expected. Our friend Pete spoke about trying to keep your life in perspective, even when you feel like you might “deserve” more than you’re getting. Afterwards, my good friend Jon played guitar and led us in worship music, my favorite part of each evening. Anytime someone begins playing a song everyone knows the words to, it can make for a great experience. But when the lyrics you all know mean more than the average love song, everything is raised to another level.

After worship, we all really hit the sack hard…except for the guys in my room. The four of us–myself, Jon, Ryan, and Cam–spent a solid hour “trying” to sleep, but actually talking about different bands and music styles. We had a couple more conversations like this during the week, and no matter how ridiculous or how serious the talks were, I felt like each one brought us closer together.

This post turned out longer than I thought it would, especially considering we haven’t actually hit the work week yet. But that part’s coming, as well as a few more pictures. Hope you’re enjoying this so far.

-Matt

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