Our chartered AIM Air flight allowed for 1000 kg of cargo and passengers. We filled it to the max with our cargo, Joseph, Angie, myself, and Boniface, a Kenyan Internet serviceman flying to Duk to repair International Relief Development’s (IRD) dish misalignment.
Our flight was delayed which allowed us to savor some African tea (heavy on the milk and sugar) and samosas at Wilson Airport, and to chat with a gentleman preparing to leave for South Sudan on a huge (in comparison to ours) Samaritan’s Purse plane.
We stopped in Lokichoggio to drop off an AIM staff member and refuel, then to Bor, the capitol of Jonglei State, South Sudan, to drop Joseph. As we approached Duk Payuel our pilot agreed to circle our building site so that I could shoot some aerial photos, though he warned that if the large birds (I don’t know what they’re called, but they’re huge) that make Duk home were soaring overhead, he would have to abort.
The John Dau Foundation (JDF) Lost Boys Clinic staff awaited us with a car along the airstrip, and IRD (International Relief Development) staff were there with a car to pick up Boniface. When I landed last fall, car travel wasn’t possible due to the flooding, so all my cargo had to be carried on the heads of women or the shoulders of men and boys. (The position of the burden is cultural.) It took several round trips to ferry the cargo to storage at the school. The community and our other NGO partners, JDF and IRD help us out, which makes working in this difficult environment easier and more pleasant.