Departure & Arrival at SEMILLA


Today’s the day!


After nearly three days of orientation on Goshen College’s campus, we finally departed for O’Hare, at the early hour of 4:00 a.m. Be that as it may, we were graced by the presence of parents and guardians who joined us for such an early send-off. Gathered in prayer by Pastor Cathy, we asked that our journey be safe and filled with anticipation for the days ahead of us. And with that, we were off. Professor Keith drove one group of students in a campus bus while the rest of us followed suit. In addition to our journey beginning at such an early time of day, it was hard to ignore the coupled fatigue that came with such ambitious traveling. A number of students quickly fell asleep on our ride to Chicago.


After arriving at O’Hare International Airport, we quickly realized that the bustling airport would be pretty challenging to traverse. But to no one’s surprise, our scholars were up to the task. Forming a chain with Professor Keith leading the front, we snaked our way through the hectic airport towards United’s group check-in. After around 20 minutes our bags had been checked and boarding passes were finally in hand. While waiting for boarding to begin, students broke away to purchase any snacks they thought necessary for the four-plus-hour plane ride. Consequently, a multitude of students came back to the terminal with chips and candy in hand (an honorable choice if you ask me). But then again, chips and candy may not have been the most nutritious choice at 9:00 a.m.

After finally boarding our plane after a grueling wait time of nearly thirty minutes, the journey for our students began to feel much more real.


Upon arriving in Guatemala, we were met outside of La Aurora International Airport by our SEMILLA hosts and a large yellow school bus. It was hard to miss a group of twenty high schoolers lugging a hoard of suitcases onto a bus in the middle of the day. Nevertheless, after snaking through the streets of Guatemala City, we finally arrived at our destination, SEMILLA. Almost without delay, we moved into our new home-away-from-home and settled down for a quick yet informative orientation from our hosts. With the majority of the day focused on arriving at SEMILLA, the students were free to relax, explore SEMILLA, and visit the local grocery store. All in all, our day concluded with an appetizing dinner and a soulful call to worship, leaving us anxiously awaiting the coming days.


-Alexander Koscher