Saturday, May 26, 2018

When I get up at 7, I notice that there’s about to be a rainstorm, and that the taps are dry again. We need to get the plastic barrels under the rainspouts to resupply our non-potable water. I roust Cam and we head for the house. Call at Audrey and Karen’s window for them to let us in. Audrey opens the front door, giving no evidence of actual consciousness.

Grab the mostly empty barrels from the 2 bathrooms and set them outside. The house has 2 fine waterspouts, which will fill the barrels with roof runoff fairly quickly in a decent rain. Of course, once the barrels are full, it’s pretty hard to move them out of the way and get another barrel in there, especially in the rain—which is precisely the time you need to do it.

Cam and I doze in the living room waiting for the rain to stop. In half an hour or so we have 3 barrels full and 2 more mostly full; that’s a good haul. It should get us through tomorrow, with plenty left over for the Mapeses when they return.

The rain continues but lets up enough around 8.30 that I think I can get into town to buy bus tickets for tomorrow. Umbrella, floppy hat, that should do it. Out on the road, there’s no traffic, and nearly all the shops are closed. The rain keeps everybody home. I start walking.

I’m most of the way to Lamin’s shop when I see a kambu approaching. Eventually I can see that the back seat is empty, so I wave him down. He turns around, obviously glad to find a customer. “VIP bus terminal, please.” Through the nearly deserted downtown to the station. I ask him how much. “I’ll wait while you buy the tickets,” he says. Customers are rare today; he’s happy to wait and get a guaranteed second fare.

8 tickets to Accra for 5 pm tomorrow. 90 cedis ($22.50) apiece. “You miss your bus, your money’s gone.” “Yes, sir.” Back to the kambu and back home. 10 cedis for both ways and the wait. An honest man on a rainy day.

Back at the house, the crew is awakening. They get to work on the mango pie, with Brigitta cutting mangoes, Flavia crushing crackers and melting butter for the crust, Lauren mixing the lime juice and spices. Mary arrives to find her kitchen full of people. Uncomplaining, she begins cutting up onions over on the side counter while I try to urge the crew to get the pie in the oven and get out of her way, without being a jerk about it. After all, I do want a slice of that pie when it’s done.

By 11 it’s in the oven. Mary has her kitchen back, Kait’s sweeping and mopping the living room floor, Karen’s cleaning the bathrooms, and everybody’s straightening things up for our exodus tomorrow. Good job.

We’re thinking about having the pie after lunch, but somebody says we really ought to have it with ice cream. OK, after lunch we can go to Melkom and get some, and have the pie then. But wait—we need to drop by Wa Regular to see the school kids at 3, so we should go to Melkom after that, since it’s right next door. Then we can bring the ice cream home and eat the pie. But wait—that’ll spoil our supper. So we’ll have it late tonight, before bed, our last night in Wa. OK then.

I hope we eventually get to eat this pie.

We take a couple of kambus to Wa Regular at 3. The kids never show up. So we take some cool pictures instead, and then go next door where the crew buys all those foods you can’t get in the States to take home. And I buy ice cream for The Pie.

We call in our orders to Mummy’s Kitchen so things will be quick when we get there. Timothy and Ivy come by a little after 6, and off we go. Mummy’s Kitchen you would probably call a café, but it’s a pretty fancy place for Wa. The lights are dimmed, and some of the lights that there are are blue. We fill a table and the waiter brings our orders. Most of the crew gets roast chicken—a leg and thigh—while Brigitta and I get roast guinea fowl, Ivy gets fish—a whole one (the best meat is in the cheeks, you know)—and Timothy gets fufu. Everything comes with a mound of rice and a small salad, which we opt not to eat. There’s a football game on—Real Madrid v Liverpool—which the guys get focused on pretty easily.

We arrive at Faith for the youth meeting just after 7. It’s a singspiration; there are about 30 young people besides us, about twice as many males as females. They sing well; a couple of them offer special music, and the team sings several numbers as well. We enjoy the fellowship.

Back at the house, it’s finally Pie Time. We throw it in the oven for a few minutes just to bring out the flavors, and it smells delightful. Looks like a peach pie, but it’s mango, which is even better. A great ending to the day.

The crew is sharing photos on their phones—something about AirDrop—and they have some good ones. Digital photography has really made mission trips a lot easier.

Tomorrow we leave Wa. Cam is riding out to a village church and preaching, and our group is singing at Faith. Active to the very end.

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Dan Olinger

Chair, Division of Bible in the BJU School of Religion.

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