Thursday, June 14, 2012 1:00pm – 6:00am CST
Well, at least the one on the left below is good looking! That is my wonderful daughter; Bapp. Her real name is Baffy Boo but over the years it has been reduced to Bapp. A lot has happened since I last wrote. Some good and some just interesting (in a perverse sort of way). We were about to land at 10:00am yesterday (only 20 minutes late) and just before we touched down we took off again. Can’t remember exactly what the pilot said but I think we were fixin to crash into another plane. Circled and landed safely. Line at customs was fairly long and by the time I cleared it and went to get my bags, they were there. Then had to take a long walk in the airport to get to where the shuttle was to take me to the airport. I went to 3 different levels before I finally found the correct one. Arrived at the hotel around noon and Paul and Jalynn had been there since about 8 but had to wait for two rooms to be cleaned. They got into their rooms at about 11:50. I called and Paul wanted to rest so we decided to wait and head downtown at 4. The next 9+ hours were really something (in a perverse sort of way). We had to take the train to downtown where we climbed another train to the Eiffel Tower. I had told Paul and Jalynn a few days ago to bring an umbrella for Paris because the forecast said “PM showers”. We made a few wrong turns in getting to the correct train but finally made it. Just as we were getting to the Tower it started to rain. Fortunately, Paul had remembered to bring his umbrella and rain coat from the States. Unfortunately, he had left them at the hotel! Well, this is June (tourist season) so there was a long line. If you have ever seen the Tower you know there are 4 pillars that have two elevators each going up. Well, only one pillar was operational and only one elevator was working. Needless to say, my umbrella could not keep us all dry. Not only was it wet but it was rather cool. I didn’t look at my watch but we were in line for at least 90 minutes. Then you take the elevator to the first landing and Jalynn wanted to go to the top. You then get on another elevator for the balance of the journey to the summit. It is a beautiful view of Paris and we got some good pictures. I had brought my little camera as it takes up far less space than my Canon. Unfortunately, the ‘card’ does not fit in my computer so I can’t show you any pictures. We did not leave the Tower until around 10 but Jalynn wanted the experience of eating in Paris so we found a nice restaurant. We ordered appetizers and she ordered a pizza. Well, it was a full blown pizza (very good) so Paul and I felt sorry for her and helped her eat it (we had our own appetizers but didn’t want her to feel bad). When we left the place we saw a Subway (yes, THE Subway) and went in and bought some cookies. We then headed back to the train station. Well, I am not going to go into great detail but the bottom line is that we had missed the last train to the airport. We knew the only way we could get back was a taxi. Outside of Ghana and Cameroon, the only other time I had ever ridden in a taxi was in Los Angeles in 1969. The driver didn’t speak English but we told him the name of the hotel at that it was at Charles DE Gaulle (the name of the airport). Off we went and went and went and went! There were at least 2 exits to the airport that were blocked off so we covered the entire city (I think). He did get us there but no until 1am. I went up to my room and quickly packed for today as we were going to have breakfast at 7 and then leave for the airport. Got up at 6:15 so in the past 50+ hours I have had about 7 or 8 hours of sleep. I think my youthfulness is really paying off as I feel fine. Had a good breakfast and then got on a big bus with a BUNCH of people and their luggage. Got to the airport around 8:30 and had another fairly long line to wait in to get our boarding passes. They have redone the area of security but we cleared it with no problems and made it to the gate with an hour to spare. Discussed a few things about the trip and then got in line to get on the plane. We were scheduled to take off at 10:30 and actually took off about 11:30. We have been in the air about 2 hours. Lunch has been served but I am still full from Breakfast so I had no lunch. We are scheduled to land at 3:55pm Douala time so should land around 4:45 because of the late departure. That will prove to be no problem. Well, I am going to relax and then go over some notes for the campaign. May not write again while flying but hopefully will write before I send this tonight. We are all doing well and ready to get to work. Tomorrow will be somewhat of a rest day although there are a number of things to do. Jalynn is going to work with Linda Bassay in getting ready to teach the children on Sundays for the next two weeks. We will go to a grocery store to buy some food for the time in Mamfe although it sounds as though Paul brought a BUNCH of food. Hopefully it is stuff I like! The trip Saturday to Mamfe should take 8 or so hours. We are doing well and continue to say thank you for your prayers and concern.
Thursday, June 14, 2012 10:25pm-4:25pm CST
Made it safely! Landed at 4:25 and made it through Customs with no problems. All bags arrived safe and intact. Jean Claude, Louis, Etienne and Kofi met us at the airport. Came to the hotel and they had a prayer with us and we enjoyed visiting with them. Went down to Paul’s room and he, Jalynn and I ate supper. It was primarily snack food; make that entirely snack food but I was careful to pick only the healthy snack food. I have been unpacking and just finished talking with Linda. After I send this I will do a few other things and should be in bed by midnight. It was really helpful in getting here so early. Tomorrow we have a number of things to do and then leave for Mamfe on Saturday. We are all well and continue to say thank you for your prayers.