Machu Picchu: Visiting It Again As I Scroll Through Photos

Oliver on the train to Machu Picchu

Oliver on the train to Machu Picchu

It’s a wet, cold March in Tacoma, and I’m thinking back on January, when I was in Peru, loving every moment of the equatorial sunshine.  Rory and I went to Peru to visit my son Brendan and his family.  This was our sixth trip to Peru, but on previous trips we had never seen Machu Picchu.  This time we did.  It was awesome, in the old sense of the word, meaning that it’s impressive beyond words.  Here are some of my favorite photos from the day we went there.

Olly and Brendan on the train to Machu Picchu

Olly and Brendan on the train to Machu Picchu

En route to Machu Picchu. Getting there was almost as enchanting as being there.

En route to Machu Picchu. Getting there was almost as enchanting as being there.

One of the slooes of Machu Picchu. Can you imagine building this?!

One of the slopes of Machu Picchu. Can you imagine building this?!

You look through a stone window, and it's like the whole world is below you.

You look through a stone window, and it’s like the whole world is below you.

room at machu picchu

One of the “rooms” at Machu Picchu. There is no mortar between the stones.

A cute guy I picked up. Lucky me, I married him, too.

A cute guy I picked up. Lucky me, I married him, too.

Another cute guy! They're everywhere at Machu Picchu!

Another cute guy! They’re everywhere at Machu Picchu!

panorama of machu piccu

A New Life, New Joy in Peru

Our family has expanded again!

Joel Archer Connally

Joel Archer Connally

On November 9, 2016 Joel Archer Connally was born in Curahuasi, Peru.  Our new grandson weighed eight-and-a-half pounds at birth and has been growing exponentially since then.  He is strong and happy, with beautiful resemblances to both his grandfathers.

Joel’s parents, Brendan and Erin, are missionaries.  Brendan provides linguistic, educational and ministry support to Peruvian churches, and Erin works as a dentist.  Joel’s older brother, Oliver (Olly), is three years old.  Like Olly, Joel will grow up with three languages.  He will be both American and Peruvian–in citizenship, in cultural understanding and in loyalties.  That’s a large mantle for small shoulders, but the boys are children of God, and they’re strong.

Olly and Joel

Olly and Joel

Rory and I recently visited Joel, Olly, Brendan and Erin in Abancay, their Andean home.  It was a week of jostling over hairpin-turn roads, walking in the sunshine (in January it’s summer there), drinking Peruvian hot chocolate, exchanging belated Christmas gifts, buying vegetables at the market, singing with Olly, and falling in love with Joel as we rocked him to sleep.  We ate ice cream at the heladeria, joined Brendan and Erin’s friends for a volleyball game–and, yes, finally saw Machu Picchu.  People say the Inca site is breathtaking, and it is.  But nothing compares with the mountains under it, around it, above it.

Brendan and Oliver at Machu Picchu

Brendan and Oliver at Machu Picchu

But since I’m making comparisons, the most amazing thing truly is this–a beautiful new child has entered our lives.  At the Quechua church Brendan and his family attend, the pastor prayed a blessing over Joel; and though my Spanish is limited, I had the privilege of reading the verse of Scripture Brendan and Erin had chosen:

Joel, Oliver, Erin and Brendan

Joel, Oliver, Erin and Brendan

Este es el niño que yo le pedí al Señor, y él me lo concedió – I prayed for this child, and the Lord has granted me what I asked of him.  I Samuel 1:27

Joel, welcome to the world and to the family!