Tuesday, June 19, 2018

The children are getting less cooperative as the tutoring sessions approach their close. That’s typical of the experience of earlier teams; I suspect a couple of reasons: 1) they just want a break, and 2) they’re preparing for our departure by introducing cracks in the relationship. At any rate, our crew is responding by lightening the pressure and just having more fun with each session—reading stories and that sort of thing.

Lunch with the missionaries is Rachelle’s chili with optional add-ons (cilantro, onion, ranch dressing, you get the idea). As usual, it’s delicious.

After the 3 pm session some of tutors go with some of the children to visit homes in the neighborhood. These particular homes are turning into real relationships; that’s fun to watch.

At 4 we get a bunch of photos taken for the record—each class with its tutors, as well as a large group photo of all the children and all the team members. You have no idea of how big a project that is; 3 of the children take off at a dead run when you call their names. It seems to me, though, that the cooperation quotient has improved over the years; this year it was only 3. 🙂

I should note that there was a house break-in and robbery just down the street from us last night. The house belonged to a man who has a duka (shop) out on the road, and the robbers clearly thought there would be some money there. They bashed in his wooden door with a bag of large rocks and then threatened him with a knife, actually cutting him some.

Ferdinand reported it all to me this morning, and we spoke about it relative to our security situation here. I don’t think it’s a significant threat, for several reasons:

  • Our compound is surrounded by a high fence that has never been breached.
  • Our houses are constructed differently, in a way that would easily withstand a makeshift battering ram made of a bag of rocks. In particular, the guest house where most of the girls are staying has an iron lattice door padlocked from the inside, and then a wooden door of considerable strength. All the windows are barred. Nobody’s getting in there, and any attempt to do so would raise the whole village, and boy, would they be mad. It’s not uncommon in East Africa for a mob to beat a captured thief to death.
  • We have a night watchman covering the compound all night long, accompanied by a pack of 8 dogs who know the difference between us and anybody the watchman would sic ‘em on. That would be the most terrifying experience of the would-be robbers’ lives. They’d go back over the fence a lot faster than they came in.
  • There are other security features that I’m not going to share publicly.

So in short, we’re fine, but not arrogant. You may feel free to sleep as well as we will.

After team devos Paige makes some popcorn, and since most of the crew heads over to the other house to access wifi, 4 of us are left to enjoy it.

I love it when a plan comes together.

Tomorrow is the last day of classes. About to wrap things up.

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Dan Olinger

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

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