Thank you for your prayers. Our kids arrived safely, and we are really enjoying having them with us.
Their flight into Manila was delayed so they arrived in the wee hours of the 26th. We had everyone back to the hotel by 3am. Later that morning, we flew to Northern Luzon. The weather the following day was not flyable, so we had a day to rest and run errands before flying into the village on Thursday. Not wanting to hike out again, we stayed only one night in the village and flew out again on Friday. It is a good thing we did, because the weather closed in again on Saturday and has not yet cleared for a flight since then. Emily and Katie were able to see where our kids grew up and our Isnag friends really enjoyed seeing Carrie and Thomas, meeting Thomas’ wife Emily, cousin Katie, and friend of the family Joel Douglas.
Thomas and Carrie also wanted to go camping on the island of Corregidor, so after getting back to Manila we took a van ride to the Bataan Peninsula and caught a small boat out to the island along with the Douglas family. Heidi and I had a room in the hotel and the kids camped for two nights. While we were there, the wind really picked up. On the second day, all boat trips were canceled and a boat load of more than 100 day tourists were stranded overnight on the island. I did very well, I was able to sell my old toothbrush and half a tube of toothpaste for $33. Just kidding. I’m not sure if we were more afraid that our little boat would not be able to make the crossing, leaving us stranded on the island or if they would give it a try in the rough seas this morning. Thankfully, we were able to get passage on the large, tourist ferry (referring of course to the boat, not the tourists) and made it safely back to Manila, hugging the coast around Manila Bay rather than braving the swells in the middle of the bay. When we arrived at the pier in Manila, we found out the other ferries had been canceled due to bad weather, so we were glad we hadn’t tried riding the small boat across the channel to Bataan.
The kids fly out tomorrow. It has been a real treat to spend these days with them. Please thank the Lord with us that Emily and Katie were able to see the village and that we were not stranded on Corregidor island. Please pray that the kids will have a safe trip back across the Pacific ocean. Please pray for Heidi and I as we make our way back to the village in the coming days.
Thank you for your prayers. May God bless your 2018! Jonathan & Heidi