We are well into our second week in Papua. Darron is already busy preaching and laying out plans for the year ahead. The territory is vast. Already two pastor’s have met with Darron who work in the interior. They are discouraged, for the work is isolated and difficult. In Darron’s free time he is still supervising the building of our house. His latest project is building a model (out of old x-ray films) of a septic system, because the local builders could not understand the drawings or our crazy American ways. Please pray that he will have much wisdom and energy for the job’s at hand.
We have been meeting in the hanger for church. Bob has two planes.
The boys continue to be happy here, despite having absolutely none of their toys. These guys have adjusted well to being content in diverse situations and I continue to be proud of them. They spend a lot of time listening to stories and looking at books and drawing, or watching the house being built or hanging out at the hanger. This next week we will start school again. None of our school books are here from America, except Math. So Mom, will create school out of the library books and creativity!!!! Gulp! We have heard that our crate from America is sitting in a port maybe 5 days away by boat…..so perhaps we will see it in a month or two. Our crate from Bandung is sitting in a port an hour and a half away by car, perhaps they will deliver it by Tuesday, perhaps?
Andrew and Aubrey have been working so hard for me at local salary wage, while I wait for a house helper. They clean bathrooms, sweep and mop floors, help cook and do laundry.
Jason. Gradson of Jan and Bob’s. Son to Heidi and Eric, he is 5 and a great new friend!
The boys doing flight simulator. It’s their world, now.
The New Year was welcomed in with more fire works then we have ever seen ignited at one time. Fire works are sold at a very cheap price and are readily available.
During the week Nathaniel was running a fever, so to be safe we ran him up to the hospital to be checked for Malaria. The Hospital is within a 10 minute walk from our home. The test (which cost $1.40) was negative. In the meantime we saw a man who had been in a motor cycle accident getting his foot sewn up and his wife her hand. She could not keep back the cries of pain and I wondered if they had numbed her. Nurses were doing all the sewing. I was intrigued. IV’s were dripping into 2 or three other patients. So much for patient privacy! By the next morning Nathaniel was much better.
That front tooth is hanging in there by a thread! : )
Yesterday I had the opportunity to do a house call. The house was dirty and dark, we had to climb up to get into it. Our patient was laying on a dirty mattress and about 7 or 8 men squatted near by watching Jan and I assess him. This 18 year old guy had hot angry swelling on his knee. Eric, Bob and Jan’s son who flies for the Catholic Mission, brought him out of the jungle several weeks ago. At that time, they told him to go and see the Doctor. Several days later he returns, looking no better and they asked him if he saw the doctor? Why yes, he had seen the doctor. They asked him to return to the hospital and get an x-ray. After several days they decided to check on him. There was this lad sitting outside the x-ray department. When asked again if he had seen the doctor, he replied, “Yes I have seen the doctor, several times.” “What did he say?” “He didn’t say anything, he just walked past me several times.” He “saw” the doctor!
After that experience, Eric and his team made sure that the young man really saw the doctor. He was diagnosed with a tumor and advised to go to Jakarta. So Jan and I were going because some things just didn’t seem to be lining up. His shoulder also had a big inflamed area. They claimed it was from a recent fall. Upon looking at his x-rays they showed the bones with jagged edges abruptly ending in the inflation area. We decided to run the x-rays to the doctor who cares for the foreigners. She looked at those x-rays for only 2 seconds and confirmed that he had a very aggressive cancer. Dr Di advised that we get an x-ray of the shoulder and lungs. If the shoulder x-ray showed the same signs as the knee, we could be confident that he was already at stage IV metastasis. If shoulder and lungs were clear, we could pursue possibly proceeding with an amputation. I was so sobered by this news and was teary. But I am addicted and can’t wait for my next opportunity to go and see………
We just received news regarded John Appell and his family. They have been serving in Chad, Africa for probably at least 10 years. John is a surgeon there and his stories are full of adventure and craziness of patient life in Africa. Their 6 month old twin baby boy died yesterday from Malaria. Please remember them in prayer as they and those close to them will so grieve their great loss. It is very painful to know that terrible things happen to people who are sacrificing so much…….and yet, they are willing because their hearts are still full of love and hope in One who gave all.
Passion Fruit Flower…fantastic.
Ever wonder why cashews are expensive? This is the cashew fruit. On the top is the “nut”. It is a lengthy process to get the nut ready to eat. We use cashews here to make cheese, gravies, milk, etc.