After being gone for almost two weeks, it is good to be home. Our trip to the jungle working with the Ashaninca people was filled with joy and frustration. It did not take many photos or video this trip, so I apologize. The next series of blog posts will basically be directly from my journal. I did take one video of the Ashaninca kids climbing trees, which is incredible. They can climb a 40 foot tree, with few limbs, to get fruit with ease and they have no fear. This first blog post will cover our trip from Cuzco to the village Chembo.
May 23, 2013 Thursday
Through the Gospel Coalition I got 40 R.C. Sproul books for free. I had them shipped to my friend Matt in Montana and he shipped 8 of them to me in Cusco. I wanted to give them out to the pastors that we work with on this trip. They did not arrive yet and it was almost time to leave. On Wednesday I finally got a notice in our P.O. Box that I had a package stuck in customs. Customs opens at 8, in theory, so I had to go to the Post Office before I hopped on the plane to Lima. After waiting for an hour I told the security guy that I had to catch a flight and asked for a favor. He got me in, I signed all the papers, paid 10 soles and was off to the airport. I received the books only less than two hours before are plane left.
We made all our flights with no problems and the pastor of the church in Sausa picked us up at the small airport in Jauja. As we got off the plane there was a truck load of Peruvian soldiers. They saw Joe and his big beard and started mocking him by calling out that he was Osama Bin Laden. Throughout the trip many people thought the Joe was from the Middle East. I preached at the church in Sausa in the evening to a good little congregation. We found out that Scott Dollar missed his plane and was uncertain about his luggage. He was still hoping to make it to Jauja tomorrow.
May 24th, 2013 Friday
As I waited for Scott Dollar and his translator Adin to arrive at the little airport in Jauja, I got a call from Tim saying that Scott missed his flight to Jauja and they lost his luggage. He will wait another day and then fly to Jauja tomorrow and then drive the 5 hours to Satipo, where we will meet up. Upon hearing this news we went in search for a car that we could hire to bring us to Satipo. We will have to make the trip in 3 legs. In the 5 hour trip to Satipo we drop around 9000 feet in elevation. Jauja sits at about 10,500 feet and Satipo is around 1,500 feet. The first leg was from Jauja to Tarma. We found a car and negotiated a price. We left the high mountains and tree-less plateaus and began to descend. At Tarma we hired another car to take us to La Merced, which is high jungle. As we descended we felt the heat and humidity increasing each hour. I love dropping from the mountains to the jungle because it seems as if you are entering a new world. The cold mountain climate and mountain culture of the Quechua people is left behind and is replaced with heat, humidity, and the people of the jungle. The clothing is different, the food changes from potatoes to fruit stands and coffee, and even the music on the radio changes to accommodate the different culture. This time of year the people are drying coffee beans out in the sun on huge tarps along the road. They sell the beans to coffee companies like Star Bucks in the States. The last leg of the trip from La Merced to Satipo was a little more than two hours. We arrived and met Miguel, the pastor we work with in Satipo.
May 25th, 2013 Saturday
May 26th, 2013 Sunday
May 27th, 2013, Monday