As the sun rose on the 18th of September we prepared to board the plane for Auki
Air travel has just resumed to Auki this month. The Landowners have been in a two year dispute with the government over the lease. The Dash 8 that we flew over in has a capacity of 36 passengers and was almost full. The airstrip is over grown with grass but after the second attempt we made a soft landing. The pilot aborted the first attempt to land and explained that there was a dog on the runway. Guess the dogs are not accustomed to airplanes yet.
Baggage is self service so Elder Hamula and Ken pick up the case of books and church materials we brought with us.
The village is next to the runway so there is a large welcome committee ready and willing to greet each plane.
Auki airport terminal
Along the road to Fauabu we saw this "tree house". Yes, a family really lives in it!
One of the objectives of our visit was to tour the Fauabu clinic so Elder Hamula and President Brewer could see the Humanitarian Project that was completed in December last year. We began by visiting with Father Michael in his office.
Father Michael showing Elder Hamula his new dispensary. Hopefully there will be more supplies in the future to take care of the needs of the many patients that come here for medical care.
Father Michael led us on a tour of the buildings
Urgent Care Building
After the tour we stopped along the road for a bite to eat. A group of school Children soon gathered to see these unusual white people.
They all loved getting their picture taken, including snoopy the dog. Notice the bush knife, which is standard equipment. These children are very skilled in the use of their bush knives and can do almost anything with them.
Elder Hamula is THIS big!!!
As we arrived at the Chapel we were greeted by the sound of conch shells being blown, orchid leis for the guests, decorations, native warriors, escorts in native dress and a path made of hand woven mats.
The members had built a shade structure to make us comfortable and protect us from the sun during the program.
After a wonderful program we all gathered in the chapel. Elder and Sister Mitchell, President and Sister Brewer and Elder Hamula each spoke to the members. Prayers were offered, songs sung, love was shared and testimonies born. The members were so grateful to have a General Authority and Mission President speak to them in their little bush chapel in Fauabu.
All too soon it was time to drive our taxi back to the airport and board our 8 seater chartered plane for the 30 minute flight back to Honiara. In case you are wondering, Elder Hamula BARELY fit in the copilots seat.
Hello, President and Sister Brewer
The views were spectacular!!
President Brewer said that Linda, our Solomon Airlines pilot was the best pilot he has flown with and this was the smoothest flight he has ever been on!