Thursday, June 23, 2011

Fun as a Root Canal

Dear Diary,
I began yesterday at a dentist appointment. It's been more than a week since I gave my eye-tooth there - had it pulled. It looked like there was no other option after trying many others to remedy an old root canal I had when I was 16. That procedure was long and involved, and if that's not bad, the doctor said afterward said it might give me some trouble since they didn't drill deep enough. It lasted 23 years.

Remembering that experience, I was braced for a pretty bad morning. The doctor said the only way to check for sure that the tooth next to the pulled one is really dead is to drill without novacaine. That sounded like a blast from the past so we tried it and it worked! No pain as he drillied about and inch or so up into the canal of my very front upper tooth. Then they have these neat rasps that they used to drag stuff out of the hole that goes nearly up to the bone. Am I being too dramatic?

The crecendo was when he got something green about the size of a mosquito out showed it to me and said: "That's your nerve" At one point he dropped an instrument or somehting which I tried to grab for him, and he noticed my hands were kind of clammy. "You don't need to be afraid", he reassured. The one bright spot was I didn't have to get an injection or wait for the numbing to come.

Next to that, haggling over building materials and running all over town to find them, and trying to keep things at Kama going seemed pretty easy.

Only problem now is that they infection that was still in the old tooth socket seems to be leaking out and making me a bit sick. He said this chronic infection can be cleared out by something he injected through the front tooth's newly opened canal. I'm hoping that works.

On top of that I would welcome prayers to get this long episode behind me.

I'd rather have the fun of a root canal anytime versus the systemic sickness that seems to be associated and sticking with me at least 6 months now. But thank God I'm still moving. This truly may have been too dramatic, once and for all there it is....

Tuesday, June 14, 2011

New Worker

It's nice to be on the interviewer side of the table. You get to ask people about themselves, help them see how much they have to offer, and actually get to choose who you want to work with.

It's hard to choose too, because you know the ones you don't choose might really want or need the work. This week our new worker at the KAMA project center started. His name is Amaraa and is working hard on some hard plumbing jobs, when that has never been his main thing. But it's a pleasure to see men of God get their hands dirty and learning new skills that will hopefully help them lead their families, and God's church more effectively and fruitfully.

I hope we will get into his main thing Thursday: building. In process I pray we help men change: "no longer foreigners and aliens, but fellow citizens with God's people and members of God's household, built on the foundation of the apostles and prophets, with Christ Jesus himself as the chief cornerstone." Ephesians 2:19,20

Settling In

Looks like we're going to make it into an apartment the same size we moved out of 4 years ago. Some of our furniture has changed, and not all of it will fit from the house in Bulgan, but we are able to use some of it as office furniture at work. So it all works out.

The girls are getting plenty of play time with their American friends on the first floor. Summer free-time is in full swing for them. Mom and Dad are starting to horn in with the gentle nudges toward getting them to read. Second and third waves of trying to give them constructive activities are piano and possibly dance lessons.

Right now though the prospect of getting our routines together in a new home and new work is starting to become a visible near future reality. And that's something to be grateful for.

There is a comfort in having a home and having food in the cupboards. Just have about 10 more cardboard boxes to work through and get rid of, then we're really moved in, thank God.

Cold Shower

Believe it or not, Mongolia is not always cold. But the water is.

Tonight I took a polar-cold shower and it wasn't at the request of Renee.

Monday morning, turning the hot water brought nothing but a sinking hollow sound out of the faucet. Then we heard that is would remain that way for the whole week. Cold water for dishes not much fun, cold water only for shaving isn't either. So I was putting off the inevitable cold shower, hoping to somehow make until Friday, or hoping it would come on early.

But some guys at the local basketball court waved me in for some hoops, and I came in the house dripping with sweat and not excited about just letting it dry and climbing into bed.

So you're in there trying to keep your feet and hands from going numb. Splashing water sparingly enough to keep the ibii jiibiis at bay, but copious enough to rinse the soap.

Then the big rinse of the hair was like getting up the nerve to plunge into the Puget Sound on a hot day. That 'take your breath away' cold is the same here.

I've always liked cold water swims because I claim its an easy way to burn calories. I was in there thinking I might have burned more calories in the shower than in the three games of basketball that caused me to take on in the first place.

(The hot water is off to give people the chance to repair or replace rusty pipes)

Only three more days to go...

Monday, June 13, 2011

BBQ Season in Mongolia Arrives

Went out of town a few miles to picnic by a lake (not pictured), and grill some burgers (pictured), where some camels grazed (also not pictured, oddly enough). Maggie, Clara, Anika, Toby, Lydia, and Johanna taking it all in.
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Farewell Picnic for Miss Karen

The girls' teacher Karen ( playing catcher), is going back to the US after teaching at the Darhan MK school for two years.

Baseball on the prairie

Johanna takes a swing for the (whoops, no fences).
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Thailand Vacation

Blue water in front (pool) and blue water behind (ocean). That about sums up what we need in a vacation. God is good and kind.
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Making Friends

Juniper Tree, the place we stayed, had a great place for kids of all kinds to play.
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Three Hour Tour

Vacation in Thailand is one of our few chances for adventures involving oceans.
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Monkey Island

Some liked it better than others
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After hike into huge cathedral-like cave

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This just in....

Vacation Roooocks! Clara in a cave.
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Johanna and Clara Enjoy a Boat Ride

Clara maybe not as much...but at least not seasick-green.
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Super Grandpa, to the Rescue

Jerry, a hero to Clara her parents
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Jerry and Ann pose with Renee at Darhan's Horsehead Fiddle Park

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Maggie's 9 now

Her friends Isaiah and Annika showed up to witness it.
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Maggie Turns 9

Here's Maggie and her cake at Pizza Romano, a pretty good pizzaria in Erdenet Mongolia.
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