As I had mentioned in my previous post, I had the opportunity to accompany Chad and Wilson on their journey to a Sapara (I'd misspelled it before) community. I'd indicated on a map where I thought the village was located but was way off base. It was about half ways from Shell to the Peruvian border - about a 30 minute flight from Shell. Along with us came a seminary student from Guayaquil named Jonathon. It was his first time into the jungle and he was very excited.
The main purpose of the trip was to continue teaching from a Bible study series published by New Tribes Mission called Fundaciones Firmes (Firm Foundations). It's a series of about 50 lessons that's designed to take an unbeliever through the Bible and then at the end challenge them to act on the information they'd received. Chad and Wilson had been in the community before but it was my first time. Wilson, one of the pastors, at our church came along as a translator as well as one of the teachers. The community was Masaramu and the majority of the community spoke mostly Quichua as their native language is almost extinct.
After our arrival, we unloaded our gear into the schoolhouse. This is where we'd sleep and also give the lessons. Normally when I go to a jungle community, I'm part of a team and accompanied by a medical resident and boxes of medicines. Even though the purpose of this trip was non medical, I'd wanted to bring along a box with some medical supplies as I'd figured that there would be a need for a doctor. I was not disappointed.
Shortly after we'd unloaded, Chad had noticed that there was a small group surrounding a boy, all looking at his foot. It turned out that he had been fishing with his father in the river and had accidentally goen speared between his toes. Fortunately the wound was pretty superficial but at risk for infection as it had occurred the day before. I was able to clean it up, bandage it properly and give his mother some antibiotics and some good ol' advil for pain. We later found out that he was the son of the community's leader - Galo.
Right before lunch, we were 'treated' to some large grubs that they'd found in a large fallen tree nearby. I'd had grubs before and didn't have fond memories from the experience. They steamed them in a large leaf with some 'hearts of palm' and they were very liquidy. This time, they were roasted on skewers and were actually quite tasty - they were very greasy inside and salty. It turns out that they often use the greasy inside as a paste to put on people's chest when they had bronchitis or pneumonia. I'll stick with Robitussin, thank you.
Lunch was smoked vagre or catfish and this was quite tasty. We also had the standard boiled yucca and plantains, washed down with a little water.
Below are some pictures of the community. All of these beautiful pictures are courtesy of Chad Irwin.