Day Three - Travel to the BUSH!

I am happy to be writing to you tonight. For the past two days Vanessa and I can both say we are happy to be alive. We were nervous about going to the bush for the first time, but now that we have returned to Monrovia, we realize we were nervous for the wrong reason. The reason we should have been nervous was because of the drive!

What an insane experience. We had two cars full of people when we left. Our car had Pastor Charles and his wife, the driver, Vanessa (and a secret guest!), Jacob, Macey, and I - a total of eight people. We did not get this many people into a SUV or even a normal size car - no, we were driving in a LITTLE car and yes I mean little. There were three people in the front, two people packed into the passenger side and then five in the back.

The drive was horendous. There were POP HOLES everywhere. That is what Liberians call holes in the road. I would equate them to what Americans would consider pot holes, but that would be an understatement. I would guess they call them POP HOLES because when you hit them they either pop your tire or your brain - depending on how hard you hit the ceiling. Not really of course but boy do they make your entire body hurt after a while.

Now as most of you would expect, our driver did a great job of missing all of the POP HOLES and stearing clear by traveling nice and slow. That is completely untrue. Vanessa and I will not be able to use our hands due to holding on so many times as we passed from one side of the road to the other missing these massive holes - much of the time traveling at over 120 km per hour. We have not had the pleasure of finding out how many mph that would be, but would love to know if anyone has any idea.

One of the other wonderful things we found out while driving is that the roads are just a suggested travel route for the drivers. Our driver felt it would be better to drive with at least two wheels off of the road at all times. This way it would be a smoother drive. For much of the time he would just drive on the side of the road to miss the POP HOLES.

Unfortunately though he hit one too many because finally at about the second hour into our trip, while still traveling at over 120 km/h one of our tires POPPED! It was incredibly scary. We are so thankful that the driver kept his head and did not go off the road completely. So we pulled over, put on the spare and continued.

About three-hours later, as we were speeding down the road, the road merged into a one-lane bridge without any warning. We barely missed going into the creek and likely being killed. As we finished screaming and talking about how we almost died the driver hit the brakes. He sat and looked backwards without saying a word. Then began backing up and said that the other car was not behind him. He began to back up and as we turned around realized that the towns people were all running towards the bridge. We could not believe it. The other car did not see the bridge in time and crashed. By the time we got back to the car, one of the pastors in the car was lying flat on the ground on the side of the road. We could not see any of the other pastors or the driver. Many of the people had run over to the car which was far back in the trees and bush and were pushing it out. Finally we found the other pastors. They were all alive THANK GOD but two of them were pretty bruised up. We went over the the one lying down (Mark) and asked if he was OK. He had two cuts above his eyes which we found out were from his glasses pushing into his forehead when they crashed. It was a terrible crash but God protected them all.

As we were walking back up to see how the car was doing, Pastor Charles informed me that the night before he had really felt that they needed to pray for the trip because the devil was not happy about us going. So many of the congregation from his church slept in his front yard. At 3AM they all walked over to the church and had a prayer time until 5AM for our trip. Can you imagine if they had not prayed what could have happened in either one of these accidents? I would hate to know.

Good night for now. We will write about day four tomorrow - Nimba County Church Visits!

In Christ,
Greg and Vanessa


Brandi said...

Oh my yes!! Too funny. . those roads are crazy, and we took them in a landrover! I hope you got lots of video and told those sweet people that we'll get them clean water soon!

Can't wait to hear more and I'm glad you are safe. Praise the Lord for HIS Protection!


Donna Barber said...

Wow- What else can one say.
I am thankful you are all doing well. When do we get to see pics (privately) of the mystery guest? ha!
I mean it-db