It's Canada Day but since we spent Tuesday in Jakarta we skip today's celebrations. We'd thought of having friends in for salmon barbecue and even been offered the use of a grill by a friend. But the day flies by. Instead of a party, we pray for our homeland and the people we love.
W, Paul, and the driver try to hoist an old sofa upstairs. Laura and I pad the concrete planter over which the sofa has to be lifted with blankets. In the end, we are defeated: the arm comes off and it thumps back down. Now it sits on the porch.
|A walk in the clouds, Bandung-style|
Thursday means a walk (actually a hike) with new friends.
But first, a couple comes for breakfast at 7am. We prayed for P and Y soon after we arrived and God granted their request to conceive a child - after six years of dashed hopes. Y is expecting their son this month.
I make French toast and they bring desserts in little bags: purple, green, yellow, and white concoctions that are normally used to break fast during Ramadan. The sweets are made by Y's aunt, who gets a lot of orders at the beginning of the month when Muslims ease into their feasting and fasting routines.
Our guest Laura and I meet a neighbor at the gate at 8am and walk together to the main street outside the neighborhood. A German lady picks us up in her SUV and drives us to the meet-up: seven of us and an exuberant retriever are walking the hills northwest of Bandung.
The pictures tell the story:
|Hillsides of mounded earth, covered with plastic wrap|
In the first valley, we have to cross the river between beautiful waterfalls. We slide our bums across a narrow log (after balancing on the 20' length of a wider tree trunk). Once we wade across the shallows of the rushing water from the "island" we've reached to the other bank, we put our shoes and socks back on.
|Laura's right behind me: |
Mariska's done it by herself and gives us
a hand as we step onto rock.
|One after another, we cross.|
|It feels good to be on solid ground.|
|The hills are very beautiful, eucalyptus trees towering over the tea plantations.|
|Wells and irrigation systems left by the Dutch still work.|
|Sundanese harvesters heap and sort tea leaves on tarps between the rows|
|Sitting on tea bags, overlooking the valleys|
|We trek down the mountain side. |
(For scale, note the big black dog at the bottom of the hill.)
|Lewak coffee: beans pooped out by a civet cat|
|Yup, then we have to head up again.|
|There are relics of the Dutch occupation everywhere,|
including this irrigation bunker.
|Several traditional platforms are built for eating or relaxing |
in campgrounds along the path.
Then we get to eat lunch with others who can no longer walk, from 2-4pm at a local Indian restaurant. Banana leaves, finger food, and biryani. All good.
*O God, you are my God, I seek you, my soul thirsts for you. Psalm 63:1 ESV
*Christ says, “To the thirsty I will give water as a gift from the spring of the water of life.” Revelation 21:6 ESV
Moravian Prayer: Heavenly Father, you provide the living water we need to sustain us through each day and each situation we face. Your life-giving stream restores us. Amen.