Landscaping 4

"honey, see that tree in the yard that the rain bent over?"
"what do you think would happen if I chopped off the top and buried it in our yard?"
"do what now?"
"if I weight it down I could make it like  rainbow tree! I predict the branches will grow up and make it like a lot of shade!."
"I have no idea."
"I'm gonna try it."
"you realized the neighbors are talking about you now, right?"
"they're just jealous."

Landscaping 4

"Babe you see that old rotten papaya tree out there?"
"I'm gonna chop it down, and turn the trunk into a planter."
"you're going to what?"
"I'm going to hollow it out, put dirt inside and make it a planter."
"mmkay. You're on your own for that one."

Landscaping 2

"Honey, why did you put a tree between two tree stumps?"
"Trust me, it'll be cool."

Landscaping oddities 1

'My husband is sometimes weird."
"Dad, that's just what?"
"Dad you have the most unique landscaping ideas I've heard of."

I decide to catalog some of my landscaping adventures just because.

#1 - In 2008 I made this for my wife out of Kwila for our Anniversary.
It is still going! and look at that patina!


Adventures in Communication

I haven't blogged much as of late. Why? Well because my job mostly involves helping others who are blogging, etc. By the end of the day I don't have the energy.  But every now and then a story comes along that I have to share.

A friend of ours was on walkabout in their language area when they contracted a puncture wound to their foot (I will spare you the photo).  Because infections happen quickly here, it wasn't long before she was in a state to be brought out of the area and to our clinic.

A message was sent back to their main team (paraphrase) "Am hurt, may need to medevac"

(I had written a longer version of this story with more details but for the purposes of flow I'm going to cut corners here).

Soon after that text was sent, they lost cell signal as the cell provider tower must have gone done (this happens frequently here).

The people who received the message had no cell signal, but they had a satellite internet connection. Using Facebook messenger they contacted a friend, who did not have a working cell phone so they called us.

(us being our Bible study group).

Our Bible study activated, and my role was to be the point man to liaise between people with no internet and people with no cell phone.  Using a combination of tools we were able to get hold of someone who could come and get the ladies and take them to safety.

I will spare you the exciting details but what ensued was a series of technical acrobatics leaping from texts to messages to land line, coordinating people who were all over the country in various stages of incommunicado.

At the climax of it all, we had a truck with a driver we didn't know, heading to pick up a patient who wasn't expecting a ride to take her to a location we weren't sure of. Dealing with this level of uncertainty forces one to pray. We did. We all prayed. A lot.

What eventually worked out was their team hiking to the river and getting signal and finding their own ride.  So, as much as the technical communication acrobatics and software were involved, in the end, good old ingenuity and survival skills out in the bush is what got the job done. 

Less than 24 hours later she was being seen by a doctor.

It took a team of people to get our friend to safety and she's on rest now as she recovers from a rather nasty foot wound.

When we say we're 'support' this is exactly the type of thing we mean. "Hey Chad, I can't get hold of so and so, can you reach them and get them to send a plane?"  "Hi Gavin this is Chad, can you send a plane to help them?" "Hi Dr. Carl this is Gavin, we're sending a plane to get so and so can you be ready to receive them at the clinic."  and it goes on and on and on.

Sometimes knowing there's a team of people behind you striving for the same goal is what it takes to help you soldier on.

Here's what patient X says about it:

My injury is only one casualty from this battle.  On this walkabout we had many physical trials!  But I consider every single difficulty that happened so worth it!  I got to teach Bible studies about prayer, forgiveness, the trinity and the saving redemption of Jesus.  We got to fit people for reading glasses so they could read the new Scriptures printed in their languages.  We got to help people play games to increase their reading fluency in their language.  We got to show a Christian film written and produced by Papua New Guineans that encouraged them to think about some of their cultural traditions in light of the truths in God's Word.  We sold many copies of newly printed Scriptures, Bible studies and children's Bible stories.  These momentary, light afflictions are nothing in relation to the priceless nature of God's truth.  Praise to God and my thanks to you for joining with us on this walkabout journey.

We support some pretty cool people.