Saturday, April 23, 2016

We are alive!

Ha! I thought that would make you want to read more. We came out of the "bush" yesterday late afternoon and are glad to be in Wewak again.

It was an experience unlike any other we have had in all these years. It was very difficult, physically. The conditions were quite primitive. The people in Sanban have no water or electricity. They were flooded and there was tons of mud everywhere. You can only access this place by boat or small plane as there is an airstrip, grass, and short. We were flown in and then walked through mud to get to the family who were hosting us.

The people were grateful and even shy. They are hard workers and life is very, very hard there. The family we stayed with are doing wonderful things to help them. They have built a medical "clinic" and have 2 RN's staffing them. Anything urgent has to be flown out, or they just don't make it.

John's surgeries went well. The first day, no one showed up! The next three days they did. It was such that after three of them, we had to run the instruments down to the host family and put them in a pressure cooker to sterilize them, run them back up, and get ready for the next. Now, picture doing all this in mud, mud, mud and more mud. There are pigs, chickens, dogs, mosquitoes, rats, poisonous millipedes, just to name a few things.

We were actually a "spectacle"! haha, really, they could only stare. Some babies screamed when they saw me. That is sad actually. I was able to do some wonderful things with the majority of the children and they would follow me around. They take English classes so some of them could say a few words. I thought that was nice. I found their language, Pidgin, to not be too hard to understand or at least get the idea of what they were trying to say.

There are many woodcarvers in that village. Beautiful things and we were given a "story Board" by one of John's patients. He was grateful to him. It is quite beautiful. I hope we get it through customs.

The heat was stifling. The mosquitoes were hungry and the rats had fun at night.

When it was time to leave, we had to be boated out for two hours along the Sepik river to a lagoon to catch a float plane back to Wewak. The boat trip was the most amazing scenery I have ever seen in my life. Pictures will not do it justice. But, it is seared in my heart. The way the people live in their "houses" floating in the river is something I cannot imagine. But, they all had beautiful smiles and waves for us as we went by in our boat, once again, a spectacle.

We are trying to recuperate from the physical toll it took on us and we will. We head out for the two day journey home Monday.

I will write more after our return as I process what just happened in our lives.

We know what it means now when we are told to "love the least of these!" I pray we did and that we did it well.

Thank you for following us.

We are grateful for you,
Christine and John

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