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Catching Up 2: These days…

You might want to get a snack; this could be a long one.  In fact, I think we’ll make it into two.

Towards the end of February, we were glad to once again receive Bonita’s dad, Bryon Sparling.  This time, he brought an extra special person along: Bonita’s mom!  As it is not easy for her to travel because of health issues, this was her first visit to the Plateau.

“Bos Bryon” is well known on the Plateau due to his numerous visits to lend a hand in various odd jobs.  He also has a special way of observing and quietly encouraging our staff.  One of his major focuses this trip was to weld a new gate for the Lemuel property.

Ironically, you can see the current, dilapidated gate in the background.

Here is the finished product…well, mostly finished.  It hasn’t been mounted yet, nor has it received its final paint job.

Speaking of welding…

At the beginning of this month, a group of Samuel’s friends and family from his church in Germany came to make new benches for the church.

Waldemar took up the welding torch in the church to fire the frames together.

Stefan and Johannes were set up to cut and grind the metal pieces on the basketball court.

Cut, pieced, welded, and painted with rust-protective paint…the frames are almost ready to go.

Jörg cut the boards, while Günther (Samuel’s dad!) and Joel (Samuel’s brother) diligently sanded them smooth.

Then there was the varnishing.

Samuel’s mom, Anke, has also become a well-known face on the Plateau.  She not only is considered an “honorary member” of the hospitality staff, but she jumped in where needed on the benches as well.

By Sunday, they already had 11 of the benches done…and Lenique’s stamp of approval.

No more need to lean backwards on your elbows or crouch forward to give your back a break.  No more unexpected descents during the service as a bench leg gives out with a sudden crack.  The new benches are not only beautiful, but actually suited for adults!  (For those of you who have not yet had the opportunity to visit the Plateau church, up until now, we have been borrowing the benches from the school.)

And you may have noticed in the picture above that Rick is back!  As usual, he arrived with pithy maxims and a willingness to help out with  multiple jobs, both great and small.

The wringer works!  Happy day for Mme Obert!

This looks a bit more tricky…

We do so appreciate men like Bryon, Rick, and Dave Muchmore who come to tackle long lists of odd-jobs from the mechanical to the electrical to the engineering to the “around the house” lists from the ladies.  They face endless frustrations, conundrums, and road blocks in a place like ours with no hardware or auto parts “store” closer than 2 hours away over the rough roads.

(Have you ever been given a bed spring to fix a truck?  Or had to fix your generator by tuning it to the note on a keyboard with the same frequency?  Or had to take apart your lights switches to discover that the reason they were not working is because the contact point was “clogged” with dead ants?  I’m telling you, these guys got stories!)

Also happening these days: the cistern at Samuel’s Trees has been finished and filled with water!

We like to think that he has actually built us a private swimming pool with a great view (the cistern sits high on top of a depot).  For more details and pictures–plus the story of Grann’s visit to the land–please visit

In the meantime, Bonita and Rachel continue their sessions.

Rachel has effortlessly fit right into the swing of things here on the Plateau.  Being a community health nurse in Canada in a context much like the Plateau, she is quite a popular lady for all things medical!  A knowledgeable nurse is one thing we usually are sorely lacking.  We are thankful that God brought her here for the next few months.

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