Well, it’s nice to be able to write with some actual news to share. Earlier this week, one of the SAMair pilots (Nathan) flew to Lima and met with officials from the Peruvian Aviation Authority (DGAC). His meeting with the guy whose signature we are waiting on for the permanent green light to return to Tsoroja went well enough, but ended with a “we need this document and this form and this…” Who knows if that is reality or just a stall tactic for a signature that will never be granted. However, Nathan also met with a woman who gives temporary permission for landing on the airstrips (which coincidentally is the way that SAMair is having to get approval for the places where they land using the float plane since those rivers/lakes aren’t actual airstrips and so weren’t on the list of airstrips in question). He explained our situation to her and was surprised at how helpful she was. She essentially said to file the paperwork for a temporary permit, and she would sign it.
In light of this, our team is going ahead with requests for the first two weeks of January, in good faith that she meant what she said. Our teammates will fly out first, and we will follow a few days later (our yard has grown back into jungle, so they will get to work getting it chopped back down before we bring the boys back in – yay, teammates!). Our plan is to stay the months of January, February, and March and come back right at the beginning of April. Again, each fight has to have pre-approval (unless it is an emergency situation), so we are praying for continued favor with DGAC, and hopefully by giving ourselves ample time to have the paperwork go through, it will work. We’re excited about finally getting some good news about getting back to the jungle.
For the moment, we are keeping busy. Our team will hold it’s annual team retreat starting this afternoon through Sunday afternoon. We have a bunch of random stuff to wade through as a team that gets piled up over the year because it isn’t that often that we are all in the same place at the same time. It’s also a lot of fun since after the business is done, we break out the games and brownies and have a great time together. Tomorrow night after the kids are in bed and the babysitters have arrived, the 6 adults will the trying out the new (and only) sushi restaurant that opened a couple of months ago. We’re all really excited about that! Also, Dan and I will also be making a trip to Lima as soon as Micah’s paperwork is ready for us. Sometime between today and the end of the year (we hope!).
As for the family, we are all doing well. The big boys are in the middle of school now, and my respect for home-schooling parents with multiple children has grown dramatically. It is a whole new ballgame teaching three instead of just Moses. Between the four boys, I feel like my day is pretty much shot for doing much else besides cooking, teaching, and nursing, but at the same time I am enjoying myself because I know that these days are precious and short. Soon enough the boys will be big and hairy and capable of doing most things without me.
Dan is also busy with school, home improvement projects, and jumping in on other projects within the missionary community where he can. He’s always in high demand for help with computers and other things with wires and buttons.
Love from us!
Dalaina for the Mays