Thursday, January 1, 2009

Bringing in the New Year with a Bang! (& a kaboom!!!)

The wind blowing Lynn's hanging chairs around like wind socks- it was crazy!
Yesterday evening we celebrated the coming New Year with Dwight and Lynn, here on the farm. About half an hour before we were to start our meal, the heavens opened up and let loose- I am quite sure God must have been emptying a lake somewhere! The Thunder & Lightning were amazing, the winds incredible, and the rain was so heavy we could hardly see our house from Dwight and Lynn’s verandah- only about 50 feet away! Lynn and I- ever the photographers, busied ourselves taking pictures of just about everything we could. I guess God decided if we couldn’t see the fireworks at home, He would provide a grand show for us to see here!
Me trying to take pics out the front door... as you can see their was a bit of wind.
Can you see our house??
About half way into the worst of it, we hear the outside bell ringing- and there stands Luckmore, one of our sponsored orphans. He had walked several kilometres to bring the papers that prove he and his sister have passed their grades so they can continue on to grade six. He was soaked to the bone and shivering, so Rick went to drive him home, barely able to see out of the windshield, even with the wipers going full tilt- the rain and wind were so strong. Rick... not so impressed with having to run around in the pouring rain and howling wind!
We were eventually able to enjoy our meal, with the rain providing nice background music. Rick ran over to our place to get some dry clothes on, and discovered a large tree had fallen in our yard- hitting the house, but Praise the Lord, no damage was done. This is our new view from the side window- nice.. but a bit close..
After supper Rick and I braved the elements (it had almost stopped raining for a few minutes) and went to check out the water level in the river. The water had risen over a metre and was threatening our river water pump. Thankfully it didn’t get high enough to pose a critical threat... but it was getting there! Here at the farm, last night’s storm caused only minimal damage- some shade cloth fell, a few trees toppled but for the most part we escaped any serious damage. Some of the families we help were not so lucky. Mae Liria looks on as we come to assess the damage! The roof blew off in the middle of the night. Rick trying to sort out the mangled peices of zinc sheeting.

Mae Liria and her three orphaned grandchildren live in a house that was built for them by the mission. Last night’s storm was so fierce, that one entire side of their roof was blown off- the timbers actually SNAPPED in half, and the zinc sheets look like twist ties!

Mae Liria explained to me how it all started with the wind blowing the window in and off it's hinges... with a big "hrahooom" (her sound not mine)

On the old frame of an ancient thatch roof they had all their clothing etc spread out to dry.

Everything they own was soaked, some of it destroyed. The children’s school notebooks soaked, and other supplies blown away. As she showed us around the “wreckage” Mae Liria waved her arms and made howling and banging noises.. describing the force of the wind. Then she pointed across the yard. I had been so distracted looking at her mangled roof that I hadn’t even noticed Enea’s house. This huge tree narrowly missed Enea's home!

Enea is one of our mercy ministry recipients. She suffers from leprosy and several other illnesses, her home is situated quite close to Liria’s so that Liria and the children can help her with her daily needs. Liria showed me how a HUGE tree had blown over in the middle of the night... falling just metres from where Enea sleeps. Also, the thatching on Enea’s roof had pretty much been blown off, and is in desperate need of replacing.

Angelina and Vira sort thru their soaked school notebooks and recently received christmas presents along with some neighborhood friends.

Fixing Lyria’s home will cost 400$, and with the current food shortage we are dealing with, our mission funds are stretched to the limit. We Praise the Lord that no one was hurt in yesterday’s storm, and that the damage that did occur is nothing that cannot be fixed. Please join with us in prayer as we seek how we can assist these families. It was definitely a crazy way to begin the year-We hope your New Years celebrations were slightly less “eventful” than ours! Have a wonderful week as we begin another year! Happy 2009! Rick and Heather

This beauty managed to survive the onslaught of rain and wind last night... so pretty.

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