27 June 2005

24 Hours and Counting? You Got That Right!

In a little over 24 hours I will be driving to the Portland Airport to collect my bride who has been, for the past 3 weeks, in Germany, helping a good friend of ours get married. She has also had some good times with her mother and sister as well as others of her family and friends. I am glad that it worked out for her to be with them for this short spell but I can tell I need her back here. I case you are wondering just why I need her back let me begin by saying that I have, of late, been sleeping in a car. Now you must understand that this has been entirely by choice but nonetheless, in a car. In fact, I have slept in a real bed once in the past week!

You see, because of the distance to the DZ (a term used by skydivers referring to the location where they can drop out of planes, the drop zone), I decided last Wednesday that I would spend the rest of the week at the DZ. That meant sleeping in the car. Of course the main reason I was ready to stay at the DZ and sleep in the car was because Angelika was not home! So, now you might understand why I need her back, to get me out of the car!

The car is really not so bad though and it has been plenty comfortable. Last week I cut a ¾ inch piece of plywood off at the end and laid it out on the seats of my VW Vanagon which I had purchased from a friend in Medford several weeks back. I took the backs off the middle seat and had just enough room to lay down my sleeping bag on the plywood. I thought it was great.

We had a boat load of tandem students show up at Skydive Oregon over last week and the weekend. I lost track of how many skydives we made but I know that on some days I was certainly happy when there were no more students on the books. Of course in all of that, not having Angelika about made it less than enjoyable. Although, I am not sure how much she might have enjoyed our accommodations at the DZ in the car. Like I say, it is a good thing that she is coming back!

Now, I should let you know that as of today I have tickets for a return trip to Côte d'Ivoire the end of July for about 10 days. I am planning to return, this time without Angelika (What Am I Thinking?!?), to be there in Bouaké at the time of the turning over of the responsibilities for the ICA campus from the school’s administration to our team. The actual director has asked that I be there for the turning over of the campus, as it will be my responsibility for the next 2 years to oversee the good management of this campus by request of our team in Côte d'Ivoire. There are still a lot of issues to sort out and things to get lined up to be ready for the turnover. If you are the praying kind of person, this is a big area of concern. Having never been in such a position, it is hard to know how this is going to go. True, we did manage this very same campus for a time before leaving our last term in Côte d'Ivoire but that was under the direction of a very wise man. He will no longer be there and it is our heads that will roll if this doesn’t work out.

I guess rolling heads may be overstating the case but you get the picture. Speaking of rolling heads, you need to be thinking about Côte d'Ivoire the next few days. Today all of the big players in the conflict in Côte d'Ivoire were to be meeting in Pretoria, South Africa with the South African president, Thabo Mbeki. This meeting is to be an evaluation of the progress towards peace as outlined in the previous peace accord signed by all of the parties the 6th of April earlier this year. Unfortunately the process has ground to a halt due to the massacre of around 100 people in the west of the country after inter-ethnic fighting flared up. There has been a shake down in the Ivoirian military due to some of the statements made which cast a shadow of doubt on the Ivoirian military’s ability or inability to respond to the unrest in this part of the country at the time of the massacres. Please do not forget to pray and think about Côte d'Ivoire.

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