Ann sent this on Tuesday 10 February 1998.
Hello family and friends! Yes, we are still alive and kicking! Sorry this is a little late in coming but it turns out we spent five days in the hospital here in Tuxtla Gutiérrez. And then, we've been taken care of by a wonderful family who we met there through one of our doctors. Turns out they are a powerful family here in Chiapas - and really cool people, too.
Anyway, a short summary. We were knocked off the road on the 29th of January and do feel it was on purpose or done by a drunk. After wracking our brains for any memory, I remember watching the van behind us and then seeing it speed up. Now, if we had seen it on a direct course for us, we could have jumped off the road. However, we think it looked like it was passing us and then swerved into us. We remember nothing else. The police found a van 8 km from the scene which matched the description of a witness but there were no papers or licence on it or anything, so who knows? On looking at the van, there were no marks on it, so we're not convinced.
The family we're with sent a lawyer and a retainer (and a chauffeur in the Suburban) with us to get the bike and we got a shock. We had thought to repair it and get back on the road when Kent's wrist is healed. But - the bike was completely, I mean completely demolished - in pieces. Most of our equipment survived, however, and even the money we had stuffed down one of the seat tubes was still there, a small miracle. Nothing was stolen which is hard to believe.
You know, we feel like God preserved us for something. Maybe His angels sent us flying in the air before we could be demolished; I don't know! But we are praying for direction. Right now, we both want to continue in about six to eight weeks after Kent's wrist is better. Our injuries were comparatively slight - Kent suffered a broken left wrist and strained neck for which he is wearing a light brace for three weeks, and I have a strained or bruised or something back. I landed on my tailbone (we think) and back on my fanny pack which had the camera in it. I'm definitely less hurt than Kent but have a hard time walking very far or fast.
Anyway, we leave Wednesday for Antigua in Guatemala where we will meet Kent's parents for a week and then study Spanish for a month or so until healed. We hope to use this time to pursue new equipment from the manufacturers - a new Cannondale tandem, new panniers and racks, and new general stuff. (Prayer and good thoughts would help here!)
Thank you so much for your prayers and letters and thoughts. God is good - we thank Him for being alive. We wish this hadn't happened but, what can you do? Hopefully we will see you in December and not sooner but who knows what will happen? Please feel free to write us at Phil's address - we're checking our voice mail about once a month so it is a little slower to communicate that way. Letters still go to my parents in Arizona unless you can get them to Kent's folks before the 13th when they leave for Guat.
We love you and miss you!
Love, Ann and Kent