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Friday, April 18, 2014

This is why we need mission planes!

We had been waiting for the perfect day to visit the source of the Zambezi River.  Wednesday arrived with blue skies a light breeze and general dry conditions as it had not rained in days.  Nathan and I got the mission vehicle out and did some routine maintenance as well as a good washing.  After lunch 8 of us loaded up into the truck and we headed out on a 1+ hour drive to the source.
 The "roads" in our area are in a generally poor to near unpassable condition right now.  The 5 mile drive to the next town over is a 30 minute drive, if you make it!  As we were making our way down the "road" we would cross wet patches where a small stream crosses the "road".  We had traversed serveral of these wet spots with one portion actually having the small river flowing down the middle of the "road" for most of 100 yards.  Soon we approached another wet spot, we slowed, shifted into 4x4 and proceeded with care trying to stay on the high areas.   With a sudden lurch to the side we grounded to a halt.
 We got out to examine the situation we were in and found ourselves high centered in a rut around 30" deep.  The wheels were completely submerged and mud and water were 8" up the door.
 We pushed, we pulled, we pried and we dug but to no avail, we were stuck good.  Many locals came to watch, help and give advice, in Lunda, pointing and jabbering like I could understand them.  We made a few calls but most of the help was a good ways off and would be hours before arriving.  In the end I don't think that another truck could have pulled us out, we were that stuck!  
Thankfully God had a plan of his own, after thrashing in the mud for nearly an hour a back hoe came up the road, imagine that.  The driver said they were on there way to where we were stuck to fix that part of the road.  My guess is that a large truck used for shipping over the road got stuck here overnight, created the giant ruts and holes and left.  The back hoe pulled us out with ease (for a fee).
 We scrapped the mud off of our legs, feet, hair and faces and talked about whether we should go on or not. It was firmly decided by all no to let this little distraction keep us from our goal.  45 minutes later we arrived at the source.
I'll save those pictures for another entry...

Thanks for praying, we head home next week.  Josh

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