Gray clouds drifted overhead, and misty rain soaked my hat and dripped off of the brim. I struggled to keep the blueprints dry while reading dimensions, measuring, and driving stakes to mark the corners of the hangar, helipad and driveway. After two years of searching and waiting, we finally had 2.5 acres of land to build on! On that gray day though, reality hit me, and a pit formed in my stomach; as hard as finding land had been, that was the easy part. I had never tackled a project of this scale before, much less in a developing country with limited resources and a language barrier to cross. I was scared, overwhelmed, and wondering why I had ever agreed to oversee this project. With no contacts in the heavy equipment industry, no yellow pages, and no equipment rental companies to be found with an internet search, I needed to clear and flatten an acre and a half of rough, furrowed sugarcane field, and cut and fill several hundred cubic yards of dirt to level the building site. I also needed a construction crew, but the language on the island we call home now is not Tagalog, and I can’t communicate well yet with most locals.
Then God sent our angel in gym shorts and flip-flops. We had just hired him as a gardener for our guesthouse, but he was seriously overqualified to be a gardener. He is fluent in Tagalog, has a background in steel fabrication and as a construction foreman, and knows how to read blueprints! He rounded up a crew and managed them well, in addition to pulling his own weight in every aspect of the project. He became a good friend as well as a trusted employee over the course of the job, and honestly if the Lord had not sent Jojo to us, There is no way that hangar would have been built in time, if at all. Check out the rest of the story in pictures. Also click here to read how it started with Just a Door!