May 29, 2013

One Cool Story

I knew Brad Willey in high school, he was in my grade. In fact, I don't think there was any people in our grade in our one high-school town that would not remember Brad! I can't begin to describe how cool and encouraging it is to hear him tell some of his story of how God intervened in his life. My brother filmed his story earlier this spring, check it out!

May 16, 2013

From the Phone No.4

To all who think countries in certain parts of the world do not adhere to the same ultra-super safe safety standards of North America, please note in the picture below how car seats - or should I say "scooter seats" - are commonly used here in Indonesia to ensure the safe riding of even the youngest passengers. Unfortunately, I don't have a picture to show of the little bamboo ones commonly seen that balance the little fellas on two poles between the parents legs. If this is in fact an illegal practice here, it is sure hard to tell.
My Dad arriving home on a Kodiak after a day of flying!
Fairly often pilot's get gifted young pythons for pets by folks interior. This one wasn't that small anymore, being 6 or 8ft long.
This picture below is right after Toni (pictured) got bit by this snake and still had a couple teeth embedded in his finger. Toni is one tough dude!
Below is what is left of a little bit larger python that got ran over by a vehicle. One of our Indonesian workers brought it to the hangar for one reason or another. Maybe a good source of snake burgers! That's one meal that'll take a bite out of hunger. (sorry for the awesome pun).

The other day, I got quite a scare as I almost stepped on a small spitting cobra while I was taking my garbage down our road. I thank God I never got bit! To all of you snake hating folks, yes, snakes have a creep factor, and some have a danger factor. But to be honest, there are maybe dangers back in Canada too that you just live with because you are used to them. One that comes to mind is really big, usually brown or black, likes to eat garbage and kills hikers and hunters every year. I know most Indonesians would probably take cobras over bears. Another is hurdling yourself down a winding highway at speeds over 100km during the winter...It would freak folks out here guaranteed (even ones with their kids on a plastic chair balanced on the front of their scooter).
A pretty cool sunset which I tried to capture with my phone. The cumulus clouds looked so cool being side lit by the sun.

May 5, 2013

The Land with No Roads

My brother and Dad each spent a day here flying along with an MAF plane & pilot. Jordan's day ended up being fairly long & adventurous as he spent time with 3 different MAF pilot's, 2 airplanes, 1 nose gear tire change in the jungle, and about 11 take off & landings.

Contrary to the title of my blog post, this particular region of Inland Borneo (the Krayan) does have the odd road, but they just don't go very far and are more suited for a 4x4 vehicle or dirt bike. I have heard there is a road leading from one part of this area into Malaysia (Approx. 1/3rd of the western side of Borneo is Malaysia and the wee Kingdom of Brunei), but alas, there is no road connection to the rest of Indonesia.

So, you could certainly say it is the Land with No Roads to the Outside World.
 Above, a muddy Cessna 206 that they flew in on being loaded & unloaded with people and cargo at the end of a grass air strip.
A family patiently waits in Long Bawan to board the MAF plane. I love this photo, as a Dad & 3 kids are occupied by his phone, but everyone else in the family is gazing off in different directions, lost in their own thoughts as they wait between fuel barrels and cardboard boxes.
Kids, kids, and more kids!
 At best, education in these areas stops after grade school. If you want your kid to attend the equivalent of Junior High (SMP) or above, they have to move out of the village, and out of the region.
Helping carry the load!
Another small village built along the outskirts of a runway. (Although, I think what you see in the picture is a road, and the runway is where the picture is taken from).

More pic's to come!

May 2, 2013

Visitors from Home

Recently my Dad & Brother came to visit us here in Indonesia for 2.5wks. It was so neat to have them here, as it made the 1.5yrs since we've seen any family seem a lot shorter. Not only that, but it was so awesome to be able to share a bit of Indonesia with them so they could experience first hand where we live, and what life is like here for us. I really feel God blessed our time together in a number of different ways, as their goal to not just "experience" Indonesia, but to see how we were adapting to life overseas, how MAF operated day in and day out, and to observe just a bit of how God was working through the Indonesian church.

My brother (Jordan) brought his camera and used it everyday, so I figured, I must share the wealth:) With his permission I plan on sharing his pic's here over the next while.
Most of these portraits are of people in our immediate neighbourhood, or other communities in Tarakan.
Below is a small(ish) monitor lizard, we often see these guys in our yard (I took pic's of one once and posted them a few months ago). These guys can get big! 4-6ft big. Usually you see the younger ones running around locally, but we have a bigger one that comes in our back yard once in a while.
Behold, the infamous "Mangy Patrick"! Name courteous of Simon. This ol' cat has been a regular fixture at the trash bin just down the street from us. Once you take a close look at him, you start to wonder why he's still alive. Jord was able to document this special occasion when ol' Mangy sauntered by with a freshly killed rat. Yummy! Although this picture is worth a million words, what the picture does not show is a pack of local Indonesian kids about to chase Mangy "P" with a fish skeleton (head still attached just like the cartoons) so he would drop the rat.

Yes, there are other cats, but Mangy comes across as the meanest and baddest in this neighbourhood.
The legend of Mangy "P" continues to grow. Apparently, I have insider info that this cat is the same one that at in times past would sneak in another persons yard, eat all the cat/dog food, and urinate in the house. He consequently survived an encounter with a pellet gun. Not only that, I have also heard that he has also survived being run over by a motorcycle. Some cats would lay down and die, but Mangy just shook it off. He's one tough cat. The truth is, animals just don't get the 'love' they do back home, they run wild and either survive or die. I've seen numerous young cats and dogs around the neighbourhood since being here that are most likely all dead now.

The truth is, people don't get the care here that they do back home either.