Thursday, February 25, 2010

Raining On the Amazon

Yesterday was a beautiful day. It started out hot and muggy, but by noon it was raining. It rained long enough that the temperature cooled right off and we had a cool afternoon. Usually it is like a sauna around here in the afternoon and we just exist until the sun sets and it cools off. But yesterday Fred and I even went out and took a walk around campus. Fred showed me some of the projects that the guys have been working on since we came. We watched the high school kids having their PE classes; guys learning basket ball drills, girls playing volley ball. We walked out to the track where one of the student teachers was running laps. Macy, Phil and Cindy's daughter-in-law, and kids were out walking and had found some ripe mangoes. We picked a couple, they tasted sooo good.We have not had as much fruit this year. The orchard is not producing very well right now.

We have seen a lot more critters this year. Cindy had a 6ft snake on her back porch. We had someone get bit by a black scorpion. We have seen 2 of them, after they were caught in a jar. Cindy had a couple of tarantulas that live just above the clothes line on the side of the house. One of them is about the size of my hand. Someone said that a small alligator was seen walking across the soccer field. I have lots of insect bits.....I never seem to notice when I am getting bit but the nice welts and itching later I do notice. They say I am fresh flesh.

This morning we are sitting out under the covered porch. I was such a nice cool night and is still cool this morning. Now it has started to rain again. The first week here was cool but the last 10 days have been hot and muggy. Cindy says they are just cooling us off so we will be ready to come back next year.

Phil and 6 or 7 guys have been up river working on a house all week. They have been camping out with hammocks and cooking their own food. Heard they are pretty tired and ready to come home. It is a 24hour slow boat ride back. The plan is that they will be home on Sat. night.

We fly out on Sunday night at about midnight. Monday, Phil and Cindy start their monthly buying for the base. It takes 3 days to do the buying each month. They stock a coop grocery and house hold supply store. They also keep 2 dorms stocked with cleaning supplies, shampoo, soap and paper products. There is also a full time laundry facility for the dorm that they keep stocked. They buy for the cafeteria that feeds 3 meals a day for 50 people. Phil is also in charge of all the maintenance on the base, with 30 buildings, 2 diesel generators, a 50 passenger launch and all these people (85 live here full time) there is always maintenance supplies that need to be found and bought. Cindy says lots of lists from lots of different budgets.

My observation..... these people live very well here because of a all the work and preparation of Phil and Cindy.

Sunday, February 21, 2010

Some Photos

Fred's favorite passtime.

Vegie day... Cindy and Macie in the store picking up their vegies for the week.

A big beetle found in one of the houses nearby.
Phil is holding this half gallon jar with the bug inside.

Fred on the front porch watching it rain and rain..

Monday, February 15, 2010

90 Degrees and Ice Dams

This morning it was 85* with 85% humidity and now it is 90* with 60% humidity. That is the lowest humidity I have seen since we arrived here a week ago. Most of the time it is between 70-85% with the temperature about the same. A breeze is blowing today and I think that brings down the humidity. Needless to say we are melting in the middle of the day. Most days I take 2 showers to cool off. Some days it is 3.

Today I got up and had some breakfast, did some laundry in Cindy's automatic washer, hung it out to dry, helped make lunch and emailed Carrie. We are having problems with an ice dam on our roof in Alaska. Kind of funny........two extremes with the weather. She is having a couple of friends help her chip some ice on the roof today.

I have been fussing with my camera and computer this week. I wanted to put up some pictures. Shane asked me to take 4 or 5 pictures every day. Maybe I will work on that again when I finish with this. I have been so spoiled the past couple of years with my girls taking and putting up pictures for me. Guess it is time I figured it out for myself again.

Cindy and I have been finishing up some sewing projects she had started. I brought some patterns and fabric to make some cool blouses but we haven't got to that yet. Today the vegetable man came. He delivers a canoe full of vegetables each week. He came a day early today because it is a holiday week (like USA Mardi Graw). Most of the businesses are closed for the week.

It sounds like we are going to town with Phil and Cindy on Wed. We plan to go out to lunch and do a little shopping. Phil is going with a group of men to work on a house in a town for a missionary couple on Friday. It is just a 12 hour speed boat ride away....a 24 hour ride by regular commerical boat. He will be back just before we leave here at the end of the month.

After a hot afternoon, about 5pm we take our showers again. As it starts to cool off Fred and I go out and sit on the covered porch and watch families go down to the dock on the Amazon River to play and swim. It is my favorite time of the day. We watch the birds fly over the water and small dolphins jump and play. Soon the bats are flying by to feed on the bugs.

Dark comes quickly and we head inside for supper. After we finish cleaning up the dishes we get out a card game and usually play until the generator is turned off at 9:30pm. It has been another good day.

We are so blessed to be here with family again.

Happy Birthday To You ....Mom Lambing and Seth, only 78 years apart.

Tuesday, February 9, 2010

Back on the Amazon

We left Phoenix on Friday, Feb 5, after a 4.5 hour delay for mechanical problems we were on our way to Atlanta. We knew we would probably miss our Brazil flight and we did. Delta put us up in a motel and we flew out the next night at 10pm.

After a short 6 hour flight we landed in Manaus, Brazil. It was 5am. It took us and hour or so to get through customs and collect our luggage. When we walked through the door Cindy & Phil were standing there with big smiles. They were starting to wonder....we were some of the last ones on our plane.

Phil & Cindy had hired a taxi to take our 4 trunks to the boat about an hour drive away. We rode with P&C in a small car they had barrowed from a fellow missionary on furlough in the states. Their son , Jeremy, was waiting for us at the river (Amazon river) with a little 16ft aluminum speed boat. It was pourrrring rain. I am sure we were quite a site flying down the river. We had covered everything as much as we could with a blue tarp and black plastic. The 5 of us all had some rain gear on (ponchos, rain jackets) and were holding umbrellas over us or in front of us, anywhere to keep the most rain off.

I was so tired from being awake all night that I just closed my eyes and prayed that I would not let go of the umbrella if I went to sleep. Just 30 minutes on the river and we were pulling up to the dock. They just left our trunks in the boat and loaded it onto a boat trailer. Soon they were pulling up to the back door with a tractor pulling the boat loaded with all our stuff.
It is quite a hike up the river bank and I was not looking forward to hauling everything up. Fred and I did good to get ourselves up that bank.