July Update

It has been several weeks now since we have posted anything new. We are enjoying our time here and the people that we serve. This continues to be a great blessing in our lives, well worth any inconvenience or perceived “sacrifice” on our part. I thought you might enjoy a few photos that we have taken over the past number of months to give a bit of a sense of what life is like here.

We see all sorts of clothing as we travel around. When the temperatures dip down to the low 20s, many wear what we could consider to be late fall or early winter jackets at home. I particularly like this one that we came across driving to church one Sunday morning

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The best deals on clothing usually can be found when you go “wheelbarrow shopping”. Trudy recently purchased a beautiful top near where we live for less than $1.

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Transportation is always a challenge, so we often see people hanging on to something while they get a ride standing on a bumper, or sit on top of load being carried in a vehicle. This picture shows part of a family going home after church and another group of people gathering to go home in a pickup truck.

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People generally disregard weight when loading their vehicles, volume (ie. How much can you pack in, strap on, pile up) seems to be the determining factor. This photo has a small taxi loaded with bags of charcoal (which is used by almost all of the population for cooking).

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A particularly bad stretch of heavy rains resulted in significant flooding of some low lying areas and resulted in the closure of the main highway to the airport. While the highway was closed it was necessary for us to make a detour of 20-30 miles in the wrong direction and then cut across the plantation to get to church. We did not mind as the drive was beautiful and much of the detour route was on the best highway in Liberia. A few times we did get behind heavily loaded vehicles which crept along the unpaved/heavily potholed dirt roads. As you can see in the picture, the challenge we faced was trying to get around these vehicles which would drive all over the road in search of smaller potholes.

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People frequently use a piece of fabric as a cushion and carry heavy loads on their heads. This starts at a very young age, and it is common to see little children carrying goods. This photo illustrates the big load for the big person and a smaller load for a smaller person.

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We also come across rather random items. On one Saturday some time ago, we had a bike taxi driver put some chickens in a row and take pictures of them. If you look closely you may see another set of feet sticking out of a backpack on the motorbike.

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