Friday, May 17, 2019 11:50pm-5:50pm CST
Whew! Jean Claude and I just finished 35 continuous hours of travel! We took a 5-hour bus ride followed by a 15-hour train ride followed by a 7-hour bus ride. In addition to that we spent 8 hours in train and bus stations waiting to move. If I have said this once I have said it a dozen times (well, at least 2); anyone who thinks that traveling is glamorous needs some serious help! Your brain must be fried or you need to see someone who specializes in helping people that are “off their rocker”! My decision making is not always the best but I made a REALLY great decision when I put this itinerary together and that is this: tomorrow is a rest day. It will be our last one as beginning on Sunday we work 4 straight days (not complaining because this is why we came) with 7 congregations. We then will make a 7-hour journey and the following day work and then make a 10-hour journey followed by another day of work. Then we get to take an 11-hour ride back to Douala. This makes trip #86 to Africa but the first one in which the total travel time was over 60 hours. I seriously want to reiterate that every minute will be worth the journey because of the souls that will be won and the brethren that will encourage us and receive encouragement from us. When we arrived at the bus station, we were able to secure a taxi quickly and he brought us to our hotel. In the past we had stayed at one that was very nice but Jean Claude checked it our last month and it has severely been run down. The one we are staying at is very nice with good A/C and a GREAT fridge. I did not know if I was going to eat supper as I had had some nice crackers and a protein bar plus plenty of water but decided to eat and we enjoyed our meal immensely. It is so nice to know that we do not have to travel for 5 days! I was able to talk with Linda in the bus and then was able to Skype with her and Charlie Brown. She was taking him to Yogurt Land and wasn’t in a talkative state. Grandma kept saying stuff and he would say: I love you, goodbye. I think there was a message for Grandma but it took a while to set in.
- If you are at the bus station in Ngondere; you do not leave the station until the bus is full. Fortunately for us the bus filled fairly quickly and we only had to wait two hours.
- When I entered the bus in Ngondere I discovered that my sweat glands are working quite well. It is much hotter up here and Jean Claude has warned me to get ready for some serious heat. The good news is that in January and February the heat is truly oppressive.
- On the way we stopped for about 20 minutes because the driver was a Muslim and this is their Holy day. Technically he was supposed to stop again at 6 but for whatever reason; he did not.
- I do not know how much rest I got on the train. It was kind of like flying in this way; even when I do sleep it doesn’t seem to be sound sleep. Even though we had a Sleep Wagon, try to imagine trying sleep on a boat rocking in the ocean. In addition to that; the train starts and stops at about 15 different places and when it starts up there is some serious jerking. Don’t know if I can sleep tonight in a “steady” bed. Actually, I don’t think I have a thing to worry about and will soon hit the sack.
Regarding the pictures below; the one on the left is of Jean Claude in the dining car of the train. The one on the right is a residential area in the North. We are both well and ready to get to work. Thanks for your continued prayers for us and Linda. She is doing better!