Monday, June 4, 2012

More Impressions

THE HOUSE

Our first impression of our house wasn't really a first impression.  When the gates opened before us and we drove into our yard, what we saw was almost exactly the same as what we had seen on one of the pictures that we had been sent while still in Canada.  When we walked into the house however, many impressions were there for the making.  One of my first thoughts about the whole thing was that it looked so "ready" for us.  There was a couple of love seat type couches in the living area, and a coffee table in the middle.  There was a nice big dining room table surrounded by chairs in the dining room, and when we opened the cupboards in the kitchen, there were dishes and "kitcheny" things there for us to use until we got our own stuff.  The best part though, was when we walked through the doorway into our bedroom and saw a bed, already made up for use, with a mosquito net hanging over it, just calling out to me to give in to the tiredness and try it out.  The MAF people who were here to greet us and show us around didn't spend long with greetings before saying their goodbyes and leaving us to begin to recover from all of the rapid change that we had just been subjected to.  I have to admit that about half an hour later I felt like Gollum in "Lord of the Rings" as I contemplated the bed. "My Precious..."  I laid down, and then... slumber.

THE HANGAR

A couple of hours later, I woke up mid morning with what I would describe as the worst case of jet lag that I have ever experienced.  I also think that when you're in the throes of it, the current jet lag is always the worst that you have ever experienced, but I digress.  My training as a pilot has always told me that one of the most efficient ways to re-set your circadian rhythm is to launch yourself into the new time zone, eating when they eat, sleeping when they sleep, and most importantly, being awake when they are awake.  Sitting around being awake when your body wants so badly to go to sleep is one of the more difficult things about this whole plan, so when we heard that the new MAF hangar was being officially opened and dedicated on the very afternoon of our arrival, we decided that we would try to attend the event.  This meant that a couple of hours later we found ourselves back in the vehicle, riding out to the town of Kajjansi, where the MAF airstrip and hangar are located.  The festivities started off with lunch, and we were able to partake of our first genuine, true blue Ugandan food.  I really enjoyed it, although in my semi-lucid state anything could have happened and I probably would have smiled and said, "That's nice".  The hangar is pretty nice.  It is a lot bigger than the previous hangar, and I think that we could fit all of our aircraft in there at the same time if we wanted to.  For those of you who it matters to, our fleet here in Uganda consists of 2 Cessna 206 aircraft, 1 Cessna 208, and 2 Cessna 208B aircraft.  It's a large hangar.  It also has a nice parts room and office space for those who need it.  During the event we were able to meet almost all of the MAF staff here, although after we left I wouldn't have been able to tell you who anyone was.  I am pleased to be able to tell you that now, almost 2 months later, I could probably tell you almost everybody's name.  There are still a couple that I am working on, but for the most part I know now.  Remembering people's names is a big deal for me. 

OTHER STUFF

In the time that has elapsed since we arrived here in Uganda, there has been so much that has gone on that I can't begin to write it all down.  Learning how to drive here was an adventure.  Driving on the left hand side of the road while sitting on the right hand side of the car is only part of it.  Add in gear changes with my left hand and it gets even more interesting.  Now throw in as extra spice the crazy traffic and driving habits of many of the people here and the condition of the roads, and you might be able to begin to start to imagine a glimpse of what it is like to drive here.  We learned where some of the shops are here, and where to go to buy food.  We have learned how to access our money, and how often that needs to happen.  We have learned how to live in a "cash only" society again.  (steep learning curve)  We have chosen a school for our children to attend in the fall.  I have gone through flight orientation and am beginning to conduct operational flights.  Soon I will be going solo.  I have learned to begin to understand heavy accents on the radio and understand new radio terminology.  I have begun to understand how to read 35 year old navigation charts and how to interpolate between what things looked like 35 years ago and what things look like now.  I've learned the process required to cross international borders with passengers.  I have learned a lot of things, but one thing that I'm only beginning to get a glimpse of at this point is what God is doing through all of these people that we are transporting around this part of Africa.  To be able to sit and listen to their stories is something that doesn't happen a lot, but from what I am hearing it is truly amazing what God is doing in and through the people here.  And you are a part of it.  Thank you for your prayers and support.  We couldn't be here without it.


2 comments:

  1. so glad to get a glimpse into your new life you are settling in to...can't wait to hear more stories...we pray for you each time we think of you!

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  2. love hearing what you think of life over there....keep it coming!

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