Tuesday, February 2, 2016 9:00pm –8:00pm CST
It is with great joy that I begin this missive. First of all I have good news for those of you who know our preacher, Richard Blaisdell and his darling wife, Teresa. This morning their daughter gave birth to a healthy daughter. This is Angie’s (the mom) 4th kid and their 7th grandchild. #8 is due later this month and we are happy that baby and mom are well. Please pray for Katie who will deliver #8.
For those of you who have been reading these HOWDYS for years; you know that most of the stuff I put on paper, er screen, is fluff or worse. Well; here goes. Got up this morning at 7 and weighed and found that I had gained 7 pounds overnight. I did have a dream about food but I don’t think that can add any weight. Went to Wal-Mart to get a new scale and I immediately lost the weight. Linda was also alarmed as she had gained 5 pounds and she didn’t even dream! Our wonderful daughter Bapp picked us up at 9:50. Some people call her Stephanie but if you look at her birth certificate, driver’s license or social security card they clearly say BAPP. She may not want this divulged but her middle name is Horace! She is a good daughter and we (Linda went with us) arrived at the airport with no problems. They dumped me and went on as they had stuff to do. It is good they didn’t come in because the computers were down at Delta and they could not have been where I had to stand for 30 minutes. I always get to airports early so this was not a problem. Made it through security with no problems and got to my gate. Called Linda and she was having lunch with Bapp. Boarded on time and the flight from Dallas to Atlanta was smooth. Layover was 2 hours but it took quite a while to get to my gate as it was on the other side of the airport.
I have a good seat because no one is next to me which gives me more room. It would be even better if I was in Business but that is not possible. I checked Business for Richard Sutton and the fare would have been $9,000 versus $1,500 for Coach. There is more luxury up front but not THAT MUCH! These trips have many blessings. Of course, by far the greatest is the training of brothers and sisters. The teaching is exciting and being in contact with such great Christians is another GREAT blessing. One of the serendipitous blessings is that of “airplane food”. I think the chef’s musts be from exotic restaurants because the food is deeeeeeeeeeeeelicious!!!! Oh, we are passing to the NW of Boston as I write. We have about 6 more hours to Paris where I will meet up with Richard Sutton. The picture below is of our wonderful 13-year-old son, Will. He is Bapp’s oldest kid. I hope that in 2 or 3 years he will be able to travel with me to Cameroon. I have done some reading and looking over seminar material. I think I am going to watch a movie and then try to get some sleep.
Wednesday, February 3, 2016 12:20pm-5:10am CST
As it turned out: I watched the first 4 episodes of Andy Griffith. When people speak of the ‘good old days’ I would prefer the days now with the exception of the morals. When I was a kid you did not have to monitor what the kids saw on TV because it was all clean. Landed on schedule and did not have to take a bus to another part of the terminal. Went through security with no problems. Within 5 minutes of my arrival at our gate Richard showed up. His flights had also been smooth with his first flight from Boise to Seattle and then Seattle to Paris. We visited while I charged my “Cameroonian Phone” and then went to a place and got a sandwich. Boarded on time and we left the gate 8 minutes late which is good for this flight. It took 22 minutes before we actually took off but we should be close to schedule. It is fascinating (in a perverse way) to watch me maneuver in this small area with my computer. It is a good thing that I am slim with a ton of dexterity. I got less sleep than usual last night (maybe an hour) and can tell it. Doubt I will sleep a lot on this journey. The flight is supposed to be 6 hours.
Wednesday, February 3, 2016 11:00pm-4:00pm CST
I spoke earlier of the birth and subsequent one to come. Well, found out that yesterday Simon’s wife gave birth and so did the wife of a brother named Joscelyn. They were all born in honor of our firstborn Doobin (his given name) who was born on Groundhog Day.
Anyone out there who says that international travel is fun needs to find someone with a good screwdriver to tighten you up! I watched a couple of videos this afternoon and then spent 3 hours with my eyes closed. No idea of how much sleep I got but anything I received is welcomed. We arrived on time and had to walk down a staircase into a waiting bus. I have never parked this far out but since we were on a bus, no problem. The first place you have to go is show your Yellow Fever card. Richard had forgotten it so he just slipped by with no problems. He has a valid shot because you have to show that to the Cameroon Embassy in Washington, D.C. to get a visa. We clear customs quickly which meant that we got to wait for 45 minutes for our bags to come out. They all did so all is well. Muabe Peter used to preach for the Dakar Church of Christ but resigned and entered the army. He is a captain and was able to bring Jean Claude inside the airport. They are keeping everyone away but it is amazing what an army man can do. We then went to get another Yellow Fever card for Richard which is not hard to get if you have the cash. Now if we get stopped he is good to go. We made it back to the hotel with no problems. However, a soccer team has most of the hotel tonight so we were put in secondary rooms and will move tomorrow. I have removed virtually nothing from my suitcases. Jean Claude, Muabe, Richard, Martin (the machine driver) and I went down to the restaurant of the hotel and had a nice cold Coke. Then Richard and I ate in his room and while we were eating; a discussion that my incredibly sweet wife and I had last night sprung to my mind. You see, I was eating Ravioli and Vienna Sausages straight out of the can. Linda said last week and I quote: I can’t believe those weenees that have to have their food heated. What’s wrong with them?! That is a verbatim quote from my wonderful wife and I heartily agree. Oh, Richard had some crackers so I crumbled them into my can and it was deeeeeeeeeeelicious. You will notice, if you count, that even this good food cannot quite match airplane food. I am fixin to Skype with Charlie Brown and Grandma. I should easily get to bed by midnight and know I will sleep well. Looking forward to tomorrow. Thanks for your prayers.