Captain’s Log- 10 May 2014- Manna from Heaven

As I prepared the plane for the morning flight I noticed a lot more people working in the “garden” around the airport. Every little shrub had a man or woman apparently trimming or cutting, many on their knees in the grass. Upon closer inspection I noticed the many shed wings on the ground and twigged to the fact that everyone was collecting flying ants, or termites. There were thousands everywhere. People had bags and water bottles full of them. It was great fun. As I pre-flighted the plane I found them all over the windshield and tops of the wings, stuck in the remains of the rain from the night before which is what brings them out. Stuck on their backs in the water from the night before that brings them up out of the ground. ( Can’t believe I don’t have a picture but I left my camera at home.)

Termites are a wonderful food source. Very fatty. There have been times when we were driving at night in the rain and have run through a cloud of thousands of termites. Thinking we could just brush them away with the windshield wipers only succeeded in smashing them across the window as if we had taken a cube of butter and smeared it on. It was impossible to see and no amount of plain water would wash it off. If you fry them up in a pan they are buttery like popcorn and taste quite delicious.   So on this morning our workers were picking them off the wings of the plane as they fueled it up for the day’s flights and plopping them in their mouths, wings and all, with great smiles on their faces at the quite literal windfall of free food.

It was just great to get in the plane again and pull away from earth into a puffy-clouded sky with 40 miles of visibility. I found myself saying “It’s a beautiful day at the office” to my front seat passenger, as is my habit. And it really was just wonderful to circle gently around the clouds to a clear skies. I love my job!

We were flying up to Faradje for Samaritan’s Purse, who are helping the local community with malaria prevention and its women & children affected by the LRA. They always do a great job and it is good to be assisting them with transportation.

Elephants of Garamba

Elephants of Garamba-  36 is my count.

Faradje is close to Garamba National Park and we often see lovely animals in the area.

UPDATE:  Emmanuel De Merode is doing well and looking forward to coming back to Congo as soon as possible.  We wish him good health and safety as he does.

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7 Responses to Captain’s Log- 10 May 2014- Manna from Heaven

  1. Tess says:

    Jon so love you guys hugs to Cher. I felt a twinge of envy about the flying.So wish we could still be doing all that. Things are so tight here in Zim one wonders how anyone can survive. Thank God we don’t rely on the economy but only on Him. Clint in Gokwe south and Dudley somewhere between Gwaai and Matetsi. Lu love you. Tess

    • Jon says:

      Hey Tess,
      We also miss you guys so much. Wish we were there. Had a lovely flight in the Samliki valley through the magic hour light with waterfalls and the Green Hills of Africa. Wish you had been there. Sorry it is hard in Zim. Everything will be alright in the end. If it’s not alright, it’s not the end! Love you all and miss you. Jon

  2. LuAnne says:

    That’s really weird about the butter effect on your windshield. I didn’t know that.

    I have seen you plop those live termites in your own mouth and it makes me cringe for some reason. With all my traveling and living overseas, I’m still a wimp when it comes to eating strange foods or living creatures of any kind. If I could be a vegetarian when I travel and not offend people, I would.

    • Jon says:

      Hey Lu, Sounds like you have had some interesting times lately. I think you are a great world traveler. Love you little sister. Jon

  3. Dave Woolsey says:

    Hi Jon, this is Kate. I loved the elephants. I am at the beach house. One of the elephants had tusks. Thanks for sharing. Kate. (Perfect timing Jon! Grandpa Dave)

    • Jon says:

      Hey Kate, How nice to hear from you. We have prayed a lot for you over the years and are so happy you are doing so much better. We love you guys very much. Uncle Jon.

  4. Bob Schleicher says:

    Jon, Tim Shaw, one of our pastors from First Pres, Honolulu, is coming to Entebbe on May 31, then on to Beni to visit the university for a few days, then on to Goma and Bukavu. He will be with a Congolese friend, Paul, and some others. Don’t know if you will get involved, but I hope so. Tim is a veteran Goma visitor and works with Heal Africa, and Dr Lusi, who was in Nyankunde while I was there in ’80-’81. I retired from GIV job here in Honolulu in 2010 and may start flying FEDEX interisland freight with local company in a Caravan. Been following you for a while. Great job. God has really shown himself in NE Congo, and now here in Hawaii. Bob and Bertie

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