Estevao has been dealing with kidney stones since he has been a young man, sometimes several times a year. He started having another bout 3 days ago and has been dealing with the pain as best he could, hoping it would pass. (Was that a pun?) Both he and his wife (Gloria) have not been sleeping well the past several days and decided it was time to go the hospital in the capital. They left about 9 am and returned about 4 pm. We are praising God that the doctors found the several kidney stones already beginning to move out of his system. With medication and one or two days, Estevao hopes to be well again.
- The other five missionaries took off for a regional prayer meeting, also returning late afternoon. They were concerned Corey and I would be alone at the center so left a cell phone with us that had phone numbers of the rest of the team, just in case an emergency occurred.
Estevao's right hand man (pronounced toolima) was also gone for a funeral. I think I saw a handful of local people walk by/through the center... that's all.
Corey tweaked the solar/generator/battery system through much of the day, continuing to evaluate the efficiency and capacity of the entire system. He finally got it all put back together and operating normally about 6:30 pm. He asked me to help at the end because he needed someone to help at a point where serious sparking might happen when reconnecting some cables. I guess he thinks I'm expendable. (Just kidding, Corey.)
When Estevao and Gloria returned to Lendem, she met with several deaf children, teaching them sign language. Her heart is to learn/teach sign language and also to record Bible stories in sign language to distribute to those who can't hear God's word spoken out loud.
I completed three tasks today:
- First: I finished mounting the exterior wireless system on the end of the main building, aiming it towards the apartments. Besides these being at a distance, there are several trees in the way, killing the signal more that I'd like. Still, this will help visitors be able to check email and update their computers from where they're staying.
- Second, I finished wiring the new internet room in the men's dorm/classroom that Guinea-Bissau nationals will be able to use when here for training and workshops. There are now 12 stations where they can connect into the internet for email and to access translation resources. I'm glad I got this done today because the week-long OneStory workshop starts Monday.
- Third, I ran network cable in the main office so that a new laser printer located in the hallway can be printed to by any of the staff from their individual offices. I first drilled a whole through the hallway ceiling and then got to crawl into the attick through a hole designed for a small Africa. Ceilings are mostly made with chicken-wire with plaster/concrete stuck to it so I had to carefully walk on only the top of the concrete walls or on the 3" wide palm beams that spanned these walls. Once In located the drilled hole, I could poke the cable down in the hallway and back in the network room. The printer is easy to set up, though I still need to write up the step-by-step instructions. The printer even has it's own web page for status and control that can be displayed in Portuguese.
The OneStory staff arrived today. They invited Corey and I to join them for homemade pizza, salad and homemade cookies. There were 12 of us in all, most from the US but one Australia and one from Brazil. We began eating outside (no mosquitos!! so no malaria threat) under a mango tree. While that sounds ideal, several of the others described the disadvantage of having such a tree next to your (tin-roofed) house. When the fruit starts dropping, "thwaaaaak" any time of the day, including at night. Talk about a rude awakening.
Tomorrow is Sunday and we might have gone to a church just a mile or so down the road. I hear, though, that the small building will be full of both the normal 100 plus 100 women here for a women's conference (duh). William, a Portuguese staffer, has invited Corey and me to join him for a Bible study he teaches closer to Bissau and then spend an hour or two fishing. The study will almost certainly be in "Kriol", a Portuguese-based criol dialect so I don't think much will be clear to me. Still, he's been nice to offer and it will be a different part of Guinea-Bissau than what we've seen.
It's that or hang around the center where the rest of the missionaries will probably hold their own service (in English).