Work in progress

John the Carver Man

When we were in Maua, and next door to our hotel, we met a wonderful person named “John the Carver Man.” He has a little booth set up on the street where he works all day carving and selling his wares to the public, especially those tourists or missionaries who are at the hotel next to him.

John has such a pleasing personality and was fun to visit with each day. We saw some of his work at Jim and Sue’s house at the Maua Methodist Hospital compound, and just fell in love with it.

On about Tuesday of our week in Maua, we saw a very short ebony log and asked John if he would carve something for us. The log was not very big, but John had a vision of carving three elephants in it, one large and two small, because the log was larger on one end and then tapered off. That sounded fine to us and we then negotiated a price for this work. Once we did this, I asked John if we could photograph him working on the project throughout the week and he said yes. The log came from Mount Kenya, and John picked it up himself.

Each night, Jackie and I would go by and see how the elephants were coming along. Some of our fellow missionaries would go by and check on John’s progress and tease us that they were going to outbid us for the elephants. Luckily, they did not and we were able to pick the finished piece on Thursday night of that week.

The elephants are headed home with us, and we look forward to displaying them at our house. We told John we would send a photo of them in their new home when they arrive.

Balloon over Fairy Chimneys

Balloon ride over Cappadocia

Jackie and I took our first hot-air balloon ride ever this morning over Cappadocia. We had a great time although getting in and out of the basket was another issue!

We may have some more balloon rides in our future although we may have been spoilt with such a soft landing. The winds are very gentle here so the pilot said that this is a great place to fly a balloon.

We saw the Fairy Chimneys from such a great vantage point today, as well as getting to see the sun rise over Turkey. Enjoy the photos.

Snail or camel

Playful images from Cappadocia

Jackie and I are in the Cappadocia region of Turkey and are seeing some strangely wonderful geography. Because of volcanic activities long ago where ash was deposited and because of centuries of erosion caused by wind and rain, there are some very unique features called “Fairy Chimneys.” In one area, there are some that remind people of certain animals or people or even hats.

Here are a few of the Fairy Chimneys. See if you agree with what our guide told us these look like.