There and Back Again

Yesterday we were going to fly to Pogapa, an interior village, to spend the night.  So, we got up bright and early (5:15 am) to be ready to take off by 6:30.  Of course, the rain that had started the night before continued on into the morning (“The rain, rain, rain came down, down, down.”  Winnie-the-Pooh?  Anyone?  Don’t I have the best cultural references?  “While unaware atop his chair, while bailing he was sailing…”) So, we couldn’t take off at 6:30 as planned.  Little plane + lots of clouds = no flying.

We waited around until about 8:30 when things started to clear up and then we were finally able to take off!

Not to long after take-off.  The pictures really don’t do it justice.  Papua is a beautiful place!

Down there under those clouds is Pogapa…and that is why we turned around and went home.  As a rule, if you can’t see the tiny airstrip…you shouldn’t land on it.

There’s the ocean!  Almost back to Nabire.

Base, sweet base.  We live in the building on the bottom right of the photo.  The hangar is in the top left.

So, we didn’t get to spend the night in Pogapa like we wanted to, but we hope to try again soon!

Internet! And My Pilot.



P.S.-my hubby is a stud pilot.  And super rugged in his pilot uniform.  See:

That’s Pieter with him.  Our newly-returned-from-furlough-fellow-Nabirite.

Nabirite is defined as someone who lives in Nabire…just so you know.

Also, I just made up the word Nabirite.

My spell check says that the second “Nabirite” I typed is spelled wrong.  But not the first or third.  Curious.

This is in Pogapa.  Pretty, eh?

(Photos courtesy of Mr. Dan “Cougar” Desalvo.)

Tear the Roof Off That Joint

We have a wee bit of construction happening on base.  One of the houses has slowly been eaten by termites and since the house is empty for a few months while we wait for a new family, MAF is taking the opportunity to tear the roof off and reconstruct it with less “appetizing” wood.  Iron wood to be exact, for those of you who are interested in that sort of thing (Dad.).

The kitchen is also being redone, so it will be all shiny and new for the new people!

And, yes, it has rained since they tore the roof off.  This is the tropics after all!  It rains a lot.

Spoils of Timika

This past weekend we went on a little getaway to Timika for one last hurrah with the Marxes before all of the insanity of packing and leaving begins!

Timika is just about an hour flight from Nabire.  But with the presence of the Freeport Mine (one of the largest gold/copper mines in the world) and large number of Australian workers, Timika has some fun stuff that the rest of Papua doesn’t.

A Pool!  Ok, so there are a few other pools in Papua.  But this one is by far the nicest!

While we enjoy the pool and the swimming and the sun, the REAL reason we go to Timika (the real reason we choose any place for vacation these days) is the FOOD!  It’s not quite like America or even Bali, but they do have a little grocery store that has some yummy imported items.

Our very American lunch: Johnsonville Brats, Doritos, Gatorade and French’s Mustard.  (The ketchup is Indonesian, so it doesn’t count even though it tastes the same)  I have no idea how much this stuff cost.  But when you come across stuff like this, you don’t even ask.  Just throw it in your cart!!!  I have NEVER found Doritos or Brats in Papua before, so they were worth every penny!

Also found in Timika: Broccoli (yes, even the broccoli is imported), Werthers originals, tortilla chips, white wine vinegar (for my homemade Ranch dressing), Pepperidge Farm cookies and Australian beef.

We’re eating good tonight people!!!

6 Things

In follow up to my “6 Things I Will Miss about Indonesia” post, here are 6 Things I Am Looking Forward to in America!

1. Living “close” to family again.  Of course, we will be in Idaho and our families are in Arizona and Illinois, but we will be in the same country!!  Idaho is much closer than halfway-around-the-world-Indonesia.

2. Road Trips!  The farthest we ever drive in Indonesia is about 40 minutes (and really…that’s probably only like 15 miles or something, oy with the traffic already!) So, we’re excited to head out on the road!  We’re not quite sure what our schedule is yet, but I’m sure there will be plenty of trips between Idaho and Arizona and Idaho and Illinois.

Oh, and as a side note…I’m excited about the snacks that they have at the gas stations along the way.  Hello Cheeze-its!!

3. Target.  This really doesn’t need any more explanation.

4. Autumn, Winter and Spring.  We’ve been stuck in perpetual Summer for 3 1/2 years, so a little change in weather is going to be awesome.  Plus I want to buy some cute coats!

5. New clothes.  We’ve basically been wearing the same clothes for the last 3 1/2 years, so it’s going to be fun to get some new stuff to wear!

6. Adding to our family!!  This is the MOST exciting part about us being in America.  I seriously cannot wait to hold my child for the first time.  My arms feel empty right now and I can’t wait to fill them with whomever God is going to place in our care!

Goodbye Two-Wheels, Hello Four

We recently sold our motorbike.  It has been faithfully getting us from point A to point B since 2009, so we are a little sad to part with it.  But since we will be gone from Indonesia for quite awhile while we adopt, there was no point in it just sitting around here.  One of our national employees bought it and he’s thrilled!  It’s the first time he’s owned his own bike.

And since we will be in the States for awhile, we decided to buy a car instead of renting or leasing.  Nathan’s Dad has been shopping around and just found a car for us!  Thank you Grandma Schmidt for lending us the money to purchase it!!

We’re so excited.  We haven’t owned a car since 2008!

Our nieces and nephew were kind enough to make sure we’d have enough trunk space.  Looks like there is room to spare!  Hopefully we’ll be adding a kid to that mix soon!


As you may have heard, there was a large earthquake in Indonesia two days ago.  We were not affected by this earthquake at all since we live on the other side of the country (like, the earthquake was in “California” and we live in “New York”…that kind of distance)

We do, however, have friends on that side of the country.  They are all reporting that everyone is safe.  Please pray for the region of Aceh at this time.

You can read their account of the earthquake here.

Ode to Manggis

This haiku* is dedicated to Manggis**, my most favoritest fruit in Indonesia:

Delicious Fruit
Get in my belly

*I don’t know if this is actually the correct pentameter for a haiku or not and my internet is too slow to look it up.  I missed the poetry unit in school…so I can genuinely say that I never learned this!

**The English word for Manggis is Mangostein, if that helps you.  It wouldn’t have helped me 4 years ago when I still lived in America.  I had no idea that this fruit existed.  But man, oh man is it tasty.  If you come across some, buy it.  You won’t regret it!

6 Things

Since it’s only about 72 days before we leave for America (in which we have to pack up our whole house, yikes!) I’ve been thinking about some things I will miss about Indonesia…

So, here it goes, 6 Things I Will Miss About Indonesia:

1.  My husband in a pilot uniform.  Not only is he super cute rugged (he hates when I call him “cute”) in his pilot uniform, I love when he comes home everyday and says, “I love my job.”  Seriously, how many people get to say that they fly a tiny airplane around the mountains and land on insane airstrips everyday?  I actually seem to know a lot of these kind of guys…but you know…that’s the life I live.

When we’re in Nampa he will mostly likely not being doing a whole lot of flying.  Instead he will be working in the hangar doing aircraft maintenance.  Which is equally valuable as the flying part….but there are no uniforms involved :(

2. Cooking from scratch.  I know that I could cook entirely from scratch in the U.S. if I really wanted to, but let’s face it, I won’t.  Why make Baja Burritos from scratch when you can just go order them from Macayos?  There are so many less dishes to do that way!

3.  This:

4.  Our awesome friends here…you know who you are!

5. My home.  We will have a place to live in the U.S. but it will be temporary….again.  We have lived in so many temporary places over the last several years.  It has made me really grateful for my home in Nabire; ants, lizards, cockroaches and all!

6.  Simplicity.  I have really grown to love the simple life we lead here by the ocean.  My day usually is made up of laundry and dishes and sweeping…but I love it.  Things aren’t in a rush.  Life happens at it’s own pace.

Obviously there are a lot more things we will miss about Indonesia, this is just the tip of the ice berg.  And there are a lot of things we are looking forward to in America…but that’s another post for another day :)


My new favorite snack:

Banana Fudgecicles!

In a food processor or blender, blend together frozen cut up bananas, some cocoa and peanut butter (if you like that sort of this).  Pour into popsicles molds and freeze.  So easy.  So yummy.  So healthy.

Next I’m going to try bananas with Hidadipa (an interior village) berries.  Yum-o!