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Sunday, June 24, 2012

This and That

When the Kodiak lands it's always the center of attention for the kids near the airstrip.

This little guy and his rooster (on a leash) were happily watching the plane being unloaded.

Two weeks ago our entire MAF Kalimantan team met in Balikpapan for our annual staff conference.  After the conference our family took a few extra days of vacation, since the travel to/from Balikpapan was already paid for by MAF.  Here's a view from the window of our hotel room.

Balikpapan has quite a few things that Tarakan doesn' Dunkin' Donuts, and McDonalds, and Pizza Hut, and...

...Yep, Starbucks!  Having grown accustomed to Indonesian prices on many things, the price of Starbucks seems ridiculous.   But once or twice a year is more than worth it for the yummy, satisfying goodness that comes from downing a Starbucks.  

The day after we got back to Tarakan was Hannah's birthday.  No, we don't usually turn all the lights off in the house when we light birthday candles--when we came back the lights had quit working in the living room--one of several things that were broken when we got back.  It took me a while to figure out the problem, but it appeared that a stray cat had yanked loose one of the wires in the ceiling, probably while chasing a rat.  It's always amazing (and depressing) how often things need to be fixed here, and how quickly things deteriorate in the heat and humidity.  

Monday, June 18, 2012

Our "New" Podded Kodiak

After three and a half weeks of hard work, our Kodiak is now sporting a new belly pod, or ECC (External Cargo Compartment).  Below are two pictures from the first day that I flew it with the new pod.  Late in the afternoon I had to divert to Mahak Baru to pick up a boy who'd been accidentally shot in the leg and needed to get to the hospital.  Everyone is gathered around the plane, below, as they load the boy into the back.

And here we are unloading the pod in Data Dian earlier in the day.

Here's some random shots from the archives.   A few months back, Britton's friend, Isaac, and his dad came over late one evening with a large rice sack--a large, squirming rice sack.  Inside was a nice little reticulated python that an Indonesian friend had given them.  So of course we had to get it out and play with it for a while.  Joy was inside with the door locked while we were in the front yard with the snakes.  Oh yes, I forgot.  There were actually two rice sacks and two snakes.

And speaking of animals, we are "blessed" with a constant supply of shrews and rats around our house.  While obviously a nuisance, if caught these rodents provide food for our sons' reticulated pythons (saving us both time and money by alleviating the need to go by baby chickens).  One day Hudson proudly proclaimed that he had designed a bucket trap for shrews.  We gave him a typical parental encouraging smile and thumbs up.  Boy were we surprised when early the next morning he even more proudly proclaimed that he had caught a shrew in his trap!  Since then, he and I have worked together to design two more, "higher-tech" bucket traps that have caught numerous shrews and a rat.  Hudson is quite the little engineer.

And here's one of my friends from Binuan, Pak Daud.  He was all dressed up that day--sporting an old head dress made from feathers and beak of a hornbill.  Forget the MAF hat, I think we should wear those things!