Greetings From Talitha!

Written by: The Bridge on Saturday, April 8th, 2006

Hi everyone! Coming out of the plane was like stepping into the hundreds of photographs my parents brought back. The only difference here is there is way more detail. They have the sweetest looking flowers, mixed into all the greenery. Unlike the photos, the cars actually honk and the big tankers give off the most horrendous stench. The palm trees wave at you gracefully, instead of just standing there. The people don?t say much more than they did on the pictures, they?re just as friendly as they manage to be with the little vocabulary they have. The children not only look at you with big dark eyes, they sidle up for hugs and a shy handshake. Their dark braided heads are hard to the touch. Every time a little group walks by one of them is bound to wave. The people are surprisingly small. Small, and with that sour Nigerian smell that always wafted out of my parent’s suitcases and smelled up the whole house for a day or two. I suppose I should get more specific!

We arrived safe and sound and a little stiff after our six hour plane ride, but the plane ride was only the beginning. We were ushered off the runway into a bus. From the bus, we were moved slowly towards the airport. Once we were close to the door a guard came out, and ushered us “Makaras” ahead into a separate line. I thought, Aha! That should speed things up! But no, we were the last ones to get our passports stamped. In the meantime, we could look left and watch our luggage coming in and being piled off the “track that brings it in”, and our dads got more anxious by the minute. As soon as Paul Vetter possibly could, he rushed off to claim it. He left my dad and the rest of us with the guard, who wanted us to declare how much money we were bringing into the country. That was kind of scary, because we all knew how corrupt everything is over here. We filled out a form and he let us go on. My dad stalled and asked a dozen questions so the guy would definitely not be able to call us back. The men then left us women with the carry-ons, while they went for the rest.

We stood there and watched them open everyone else’s suitcases and dig around in them. Then along came our luggage with our guys in tow. Somehow Paul Vetter and my dad managed to convince them that we were a group, and that we were missionaries, and for some reason or the other they made everyone move over and we just walked on through. What a relief. OH! I forgot to mention that it was stifling hot in there. We were all soaked in about ten minutes.

Then there was the drive home with the Palmgrove guys. The closest thing to it that I have ever experienced was maybe joy-riding with the windows down, with the music going, and the driver trying to be as daring as he possibly could. We whizzed in and out of traffic avoiding all the pot holes we could, all the way to Palmgrove. There was one road where our driver said, after eight (when it gets dark) people start putting up illegal check-stops and robbing the drivers of their vehicle and everything in it. We had Inno’s Government vehicle, so we were let through every check stop without even having to slow down. We made it home just before dark. My mom wanted a pineapple very badly, but they didn’t even dare stop for that. Annefiok, our driver, brought us two the next day instead.

Here in Palmgrove, things kind of slowed down in a way. A lot of people, and at least half of the children came over to say hi. Some came right away, and others have been stopping by as they found time. I think so far I’m managed to put three names and faces together. : ) Glory, of course and Blessed, who?s cooking this week and our driver, who appears to have three names not just one.

By the way, if anyone wants to call us, just dial 011-8816 41455201. We?re six hours ahead of you for now, so I guess you’ll have to learn to count to six before you dial. There is no fax machine so “beziehungsweise” no fax number to give you.

Showing 10 comments

Ian said:
On: 10th Apr, 2006 at 08:27

Hi Talitha

It’s wonderful to hear that you have arrived safely! Thank you two for the reports you are sending. They all end up in the kitchen and are faithfully read every day. Wishing you God’s blessing and protection. Great your parents, Paul Vetter and Clara Basel for us!
Ian Kl.

Charlie said:
On: 10th Apr, 2006 at 11:51

Yo TJela,…sounds like you’re having quite a time there. God be with you!
I’m taking care of your Munchkins. 😀 They’re getting used to things already.
See you in a few months!
Love to all, Char

Mary said:
On: 10th Apr, 2006 at 12:41

Hi Ankela Olvetter and Ta
We are really glad you arrived safe and sound. God must have heard our prayers. We might just give you a call one of these fine days just to please Kristen. He can’t stop talking about you guys. He asks about Otta everyday, maybe even every hour. He really misses you, and so do we.
Say Hi to Paul and Clara
God Be with you.
We love you

Kleinsasser said:
On: 10th Apr, 2006 at 15:48

Hi Lance and all the rest.
Just thought I would jump in to say hi and to let you know we just managed to save your bees from drowning in the flood waters of the rising red. Ian and I moved them up on the south side of the grain system where they are happily carrying polen and sugar water, so dont worry about your thousends of little friends out here, were all rooten for ya. Oh and when there too busy working the rest of us will keep you in our prayers. love you all. Irvin Kleinsasser

Leah said:
On: 11th Apr, 2006 at 19:27

Hi Talitha,
Sure was nice to hear that you made it there all in one peice…must have been the answered prayers..Wishing you lots of interesting adventures…and a safe stay….Hi to your mom dad and Lance…

Anonymous said:
On: 11th Apr, 2006 at 21:36

Hi Talitha,
It sure is nice to here from you and that You are all doing OK. We think of you often and wonder what you are doing at the moment. Your reports make Palmgrove sound all that much real and I hope you continue to find the time to send them. You are a part of our prayers and have our full support. God bless. Philip/Baker

Jeny/maple said:
On: 14th Apr, 2006 at 13:36

Hi Talitha. Great to hear a sign of life from a Dien too. I’ve always been so interested in just how a Dien and I guess females in general, bide their time in Palmgrove. What exactly do you do? Is it much the same thing we do here, cooking, babysitting, teaching, etc. or are there different responsibilities? Do you get to take a shower every day? How often then? It’s so hard to put myself in your shoes… tho I’ve often wished for what you’re experiencing. Keep posting, Talitha, and Godspeed.

Anonymous said:
On: 14th Apr, 2006 at 17:13

Jenny, Jenny, Jenny. That is like asking someone you know if they take a shower everyday, and letting them figure out why you would ask. What type of shower facilites does Palmgrove have, by far doesn’t seem as personal. Just a thought.

Anonymous said:
On: 15th Apr, 2006 at 11:18

hello from homewood colony in manitoba. we are looking forward to hearing whats going on

Jeny/maple said:
On: 18th Apr, 2006 at 20:08

Sorry Anonymous. (Blush). I guess what I meant was, are you able to take a shower every day if you want too. (Nothing personal, Talitha, as I’m sure u knew that)