Wednesday, October 21, 2009

New Airstrips

Chad flew to a couple of villages last Friday with our new Ecuadorian pilot, Daniel Soria and a DAC inspector (FAA equivalent here). They were flying to both places with the purpose of opening up new airstrips. This involves doing a fly-over first and then several low passes before actually touching the wheels on the new surface. Then, once they land, they will walk the airstrip, measure it and make observations and recommendations. Of course the people in the villages are super excited to see them because they have been working on these airstrips for 1 to 2 years! Can you imagine clearing the jungle well enough that an airplane could land?!! Sometimes after a village starts to clear the land or have been working on it for some time, they realize that there is an obstacle in the way that won't allow their plan to work, so they have to start again in another direction. How discouraging! But now, these two communities have access to medical care via air ambulance flights and the possibility to hear God's word from missionaries that can visit. Just last week a community with a new airstrip that Chad opened, wrote to us and asked that a missionary come in to tell them more about who Jesus is!!! Exciting stuff!!

So, here are some pictures from the day....








Daniel "walking" the airstrip and letting one of the kids use the measuring wheel. The wood stake in Daniel's hand is to measure the hardness of the suface and looks for soft spots that could damage the plane.



Here the DAC inspector, Jaime, tells the community of some additional work that needs to be done on the airstrip.





Does this look like your lunch? It was Chad's!!!!



Daniel ready for lunch.






Love those "crowns" that don't fit Daniel or the big headed gringo!



The whole community gathered at the second airstrip for a community photo.







Back home in Shell. Our house is to the right of the airstrip, on the closest end.



Each village gave the guys gifts of produce.
This is the biggest pineapple I have ever seen.




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