It all started with a phone call. The type of phone call where the person says, “I have some news”, and then starts laughing. Not laughter of the funny sort but of the, “You won’t believe what I’m about to tell you cause it’s so ridiculous,” sort.
Shawn, our team leader informed us on that MAF (the “airline” we use to get in and out of Mundri) had called and told him our airstrip in Mundri was closed for a week for repairs. So, we wouldn’t be able to land there on Thursday when we were supposed to fly. Our options were an airstrip 3 hours away or 7 hours away.
While this sounds reasonable we were shocked. We (our team) is involved in helping raise money in the surrounding area of Mundri for the airstrip repairs. We had no knowledge of any repairs that were needed nor has anyone actually given any money for the repairs. Not to mention it is a dirt airstrip and we’re in the middle of dry season. What could have possibly happened to the dirt strip of land that needed to be repaired?
We were told to think about where we would prefer to land and let them know.
In the midst of this, Heather, Shawn’s wife, got sick. Shawn has also been sick on and off so they were considering staying an extra week in Kampala for more rest.
All our plans would need to be set on Wednesday.
MAF didn’t have any open seats for Shawn and Heather and their 4 kids until February 27. They were now coming with us in spite of illness.
Another phone call…
We had requested an extra 200 kg’s of weight (on top of the 135kg we had for free) on our flight to get all the groceries and supplies (including seedlings I had bought for our agriculture project. Seedlings that need to be watered to keep them alive cause that is what you do with plants, so I’m told.) back in to Mundri. It had been confirmed via e-mail until the above-mentioned phone call.
Rather than having a total of 335kg we were told we only had 225. 1kg is 2.2lbs. We had a lot of weight to ditch and only 16 hours before we had to check in for our flight.
We quickly set aside items we could do without for the next 3-4 weeks hoping MAF can get whatever we left behind to us in Mundri in that time frame. Ground beef, chicken, cheese, butter and some other miscellaneous items were all set aside. After scurrying around for 4 hours we had got the weight down to the right amount.
While shuffling thru our frozen items Shawn informed us to could land in Mundri as there weren’t actually any repairs. Also, the airstrip 3 hours away wouldn’t have been an option as there had been some tribal fighting the night before and the town was shut down. God had cleared that hurdle for us!
In the midst of all of this, I, Will, dropped my cell phone in the toilet. Perfect. (insert not so sweet words said in my head)
I don’t usually do stuff like that. Actually, I’ve never done anything like that. Not once have I ever dropped my phone in water of any sort, much less that of a toilet. This does not make me any better than people who have don’t that many times. However, it lets you know my mental (I wanted to sit in a corner, look out a window and just rock for a little while) and emotional (thought about playing in traffic) at the time.
|The "seedlings" that finally made|
it to Mundri with us!
Up early. Very early. Car arrived at 5:50am to load our things and get to the airfield that is 45 minutes away.
10 minutes before arriving at the airfield it hits me. The seedlings (the one’s I’m supposed to be watering) were still at our guesthouse. There was no way a car could make it to us before we needed to take off. Our amazing driver, David, quickly called a friend who drives a “boda” (motorcycle taxi) to go get the two boxes of seedlings and bring them to us.
We’re scheduled to take off at 8am. No boda loaded down with seedlings had arrived yet. Engine starts. We’re all buckled in.
And then the camera’s started rolling…
The boda driver arrives at the gate and is quickly ushered through. He passes the plants off to an MAF employee who had been waiting for them with a car. He speeds down to the plane as were beginning to push back…jumps out and gives a look to the pilot of, “please let me put these on the plane. I don’t want to have to water them!” God once again cleared a hurdle.
We’re now flying somewhere above Uganda.
Shaw and Heather continue to battle some sickness so please pray for them. My phone is drying out and I’m hopeful after a couple days it will work just fine. The food we need/want for the next few weeks is on board plus some of the stuff we thought we would have to leave behind. We did still leave quite a bit behind but we will take the small victory!
I’m not sure what I’m supposed to learn in all of this. I flippantly want to say, “God is good.” And, he is, but it’s not because the seedlings made it on board or because my phone will dry out. He is good because it is his character. His goodness doesn’t waver based on what happens to me.
And, he loves me even when I forget important things or do stupid stuff.