Today, after multiple failed attempts, we got our 4 wheeler into Menya. Today also, I was spending the morning with Lipson, one of my language teachers (who is also one of my top two favorite Menyans so far.) So Lipson was with me at the airstrip. Once I had reassembled the parts of the 4 wheeler that had been removed to fit it in the plane, I asked him if he wanted to ride back to our village on the front rack. He said yes.

I wish that I had video of this experience because his joy would have rivaled my kids’. As we drove past others they would call out to Lipson, he would yell back and everyone would smile and laugh. We had a brief hiccough when the engine stalled on a steep hill because there wasn’t much gas in the tank. Even after we got more gas in there, it wouldn’t start, but then I MacGyvered it and we were rolling again.

When we got back to the house and disembarked, Lipson looked at me holding the leg of his shorts and said “When I hopped off, your four wheeler ripped the seam of my trousers.” (but not in English) Even though he was friendly and smiling, I knew this meant (in PNG culture) that it was my fault his shorts were ripped. So I told him we could sew them up for him. He showed up this evening wearing different shorts ready to drop off the ripped ones. When I asked if he wanted to get them Thursday when he is coming anyway, he said, “Well, I’ve only got two trousers…” I told him they would be ready tomorrow.

Elizabeth to the rescue–as you can see. Not only did she mend the popped part of the seam, but she continued through the entire weak seam and sewed the pocket back on.

  1. karen swoap

    Good thing you understood the culture or this might have been a problem with lasting effects. As my Dad always says, “No good deed goes unpunished.”

  2. annabelle carter

    one of my favorite posts and pictures:)

  3. Ashley Gaymon

    I love so many parts of this post! I can visualize the ride back, and I smiled as I read it – so fun! Also, I love that Elizabeth is able to put her many many talents, and her generous and thoughtful heart to (more) good use! Love ya’ll!

  4. PopPop

    Going the extra mile (repairing the pockets) is rather biblical I would think.

    It also builds trust.

What do you think?