Wednesday, September 17, 2008

Gabe in the Philippines

Greetings Friends!

After our ordeal in Houston, I have continued on to the Philippines. OK, this may seem petty to those wealthy world-travelers among us, but I had my intial Frist-Class experience! Here are the first two courses of a 5 course (maybe more) meal.

Everything you have seen in the movies is true, from the hot towels, to the larger bathrooms to fully-reclining seats which helps on a 15 hour flight. Next, the hotel is rather spectacular. Not quite Disney, but inpressive in its own way. Here is the building of my room.

Here is the view across the 5+ acre saltwater swimming pool. There are 3-4 other swimming pools plus a coral reef, spa, fishing pond, lots of activities for kids, 4 restaurants, a private beach, scuba . . . I wish my family was here to enjoy the experience. I don't, however, wish to attempt a 30 hour travel experience with two small boys. Here is a satellite view:,123.983803&spn=0.002513,0.005472&t=k&z=18

More updates later, or see you at Connection Group!


Knowles Family Update


First, thanks to all of you for your prayers and encouragement over the past week. The chaos should be over now. To review:

I had a work trip to Chihuahua, Mexico and Cebu, Philippines scheduled September 11-26. Rather than leave Kristin and the boys at home, we scheduled a trip to Houston September 10-18 where Kristin's sister and family live (Tim, Jennifer, Zachary, and Jacob Roth). I was on the same flight as Kristin, Nate, and Nick, but they were scheudled to come home alone. I purchased the tickets on Priceline, so the flight was routed through Chicago as opposed to direct as we had hoped.

Watching the weather days before we left, we observed Hurricane Ike cross the Carribean into the Gulf of Mexico. First, some brief hurricane background: Hurricane Rita hit the Texas / Louisiana coast in 2005, less than 2 weeks after Katrina hit New Orleans. People feared the worst after what happened to New Orleans, so all of Houston evacuated. Interstates were jammed, people ran out of gas just sitting in traffic. At the last moment, Rita turned north. Houston recieved about 1/2 inch of rain.

The day we left Lexington, Ike was forecasted to make landfall near the Texas / Mexico border, so we saw no reason to alter our plans. However, the next day, Ike was forecasted to hit just south of Houston. Fearing the airports would be closed on my scheduled return day, I postponed my trip to Chihuahua (sorry Lexmark). That decision turned out to be a good one, as Ike made a direct hit on Houston and I would have been stuck in Chihuahua for at least 3 more days and would have missed my flight to the Philippines.

The day before Ike hit Houston, we boarded up the Roth's house and move to Tim's church which turned out to be an ideal location. Ike made a direct hit on Houston. Winds reached 112 mph downtown which is about 30 miles inland from Glaveston. 2.4 of Houston's 2.5 million households lost power. Power wa not expected for up to 4 weeks, so we relocated to Kristin's cousin's home in San Antonio, about 3 hours west.

I rearranged my trip to the Philippines to depart from San Antonio on Monday.\

I'm in the Philippines now and Kristin should be in Lexington any moment.

Nate and his cousin Zachary observe Ike's devastation on their playground.

Thursday, September 4, 2008

Upcoming events

We are currently looking at our Fall CG schedule. Here is the finalized version

September 19 – CG-Held at Gabe and Kristin’s house; Jerri scheduled to lead (most likely)
October 3 –CG- Held at Bethany and Rod’s new house?, Game night for those not going to Cedar Point hosted by Robert.
October 17 – CG as Nate's 2nd b-day party at Gabe and Kristin’s house.
**October 24 - CG - (Gabe out of town) –Leader unknown, Annual Pumpkin carving event, Return to Ross and Rachel’s house
November 7 - CG - (Gabe out of town)- Leader?, Ross and Rachel’s house
November 21 - CG - Thanksgiving potluck, Ross and Rachel’s house
December 5 - CG – Regular CG, teacher to be announced, Ross and Rachel’s house
December 19 - CG - White Elephant Party, Ross and Rachel’s house
December 31 - CG - New Year's eve party? Location and event undecided at this time

**-where CG shifts by one week