Tuesday, June 23, 2009

Cameroon Introduction

Now that we let you know that we are here and safe let me go back and tell you a few more details about our adventures so far. It began at the airport in G.R. we arrived with a two hour window feeling confident and happy to be on our way. When we got up to check in the attendant asked for our passports. We explained that we didn’t have them, just photocopies, because the embassy did not send them to us in time and that the passports were waiting for us in Newark, NJ. The attendant typed a lot then made a phone call, then typed some more. Finally, she said I cannot let you on the plane without your passports. We explained again but she said I can’t let you on. She gave us a number to call to plead our case. We called and the Lady said she could not help us either. We stood in line again to get up to the counter. When we finally got up there we asked again and told her that the phone number didn’t help us. The attendant said she didn’t think she could help us but she picked up the phone and made a call. After about two minutes she hung up and said, “Ok, they let me do it. But you will need to check all your luggage back in at Newark and start all over again.” We said “Ok, gladly.” So we picked up our tickets and ‘ran’ to our plane which was now loaded and ready to leave. We made it. We were a little shaky but on our way.
After our plane landed in Newark we claimed our 17 pieces of luggage which Drew and Haley sat with while Sheryl and I took a taxi three miles to the FedEx building and claimed our envelope containing our precious visas. After returning to the airport we stood in line for about two hours and rechecked in our bags. Finally all was done and we found a nice food court near our gate and had some lunch. Soon we were joined by Mrs. Chamberlin and we enjoyed some time of visiting before boarding the plane for our first 6 hour flight. That ride was nice. We followed that flight up with another 7 hour flight full of rowdy/crying children and rude argumentative adults. THAT was an experience! In the process some of us had our ankles swell very badly but by the time we began to descend into Douala they were forgotten for the time being. Haley will remember the descension well. You know those brown bags they put in the seat pouch, well they're not just for hand puppets. Next came what was supposed to be a hour and a half drive over to Limbe but… that trip took over 7 hours due to there being one bridge that leads in and out of Douala designed with2 lanes going both ways but while we were on it they made it 5-6 lanes going out and one coming in. Eye popping experience but we had an amazing driver who made it to the mission safely.
Next came sleep. We were given a lovely apartment to stay in. We were greeted with little wall geckos outside our door. They are helpful little guys that act as bug catchers. Thanks to our little chameleon at school we are all pretty great with them. Haley woke up the next morning there was one sitting on her windowsill in her room looking at this strange new person.
The weather is surprisingly very nice. The breeze makes it so nice and the view, ah, the view is amazing! If you just look out around you see beautiful mountains and the Ocean. We are surrounded by mountains and islands. We will take pictures but they won’t do it justice.
Now for some Dana moments… we went in for breakfast the next day and I took my curling iron over to the power strip, plugged it in, and walked out while it warmed up. A few minutes later I saw Bro. Paul Light go in and do something with it. When he came out he was rubbing his finger that now had a little blister. I thought, ”Oh, He burned himself on my iron.” I went into look at his invitation and saw my curling iron was now melted into three pieces. There voltage is like twice what ours is and requires a converter. Less than 12 hours here and I almost burned the mission down, I burned Bro. Light and now my hair is a lost cause as well. What a start! Watch out, Cameroon, Dana has arrived. Since then I have endeavored to be more careful so I don’t get put back on the plane early. They were all very forgiving.


Dawn K. said...

We are so glad you made it safely. It sounds like we had definitely better continue keeping you in prayer though :) You are so funny, Dana; I'm sure you (and the rest of your companions) will keep everyone entertained. Please remember to write all your experiences down, so you can share them with us when you get back. Really, though, we have been praying much for you! We love all of you.
Love & prayers,
Dawn (& Joe)

Anonymous said...

lol, your curling iron story is the best. Thanks to your expense, I had a good laugh today. Love ya.