Every trip I take usually ends up with an "eventful" story! Since I travel alone it generally is something that happens to me - like when I arrived in Conakry, Guinea in West Africa to the Africa Mercy Ship- Enroute to the ship, in the dark, late at night, the driver from the hotel I booked was stopped by the police, arrested and the car was towed. I was standing on the side of the road with my suitcases smiling at a huge crowd of curious new "friends" thinking "no one will believe this one". I texted Wick, shocked that my phone worked for once, and he said CINDY - CAN YOU FIND A POLICEMAN? Ha Ha That was the LAST thing I needed!!! Before it worked out and the police let the driver take me in.a taxi to the hotel, I held up a picture of the Mercy Ship with my best hand signals and the BOSS LADY of the group started grinning and pointing to her eyes. Years earlier she had cataracts removed on the ship - It is a very small world even on the side of the road in Guinea. God has shown me protection in so many ways and he always makes sure I am able to see HIS hand in it all.
Today's story, for once, does not directly involve me, even though I probably lost a few years from it. On Friday night at midnight, Juana, Maria, and I were to fly from Addis Ababa to Dar es Salaam, Tanzania. We had planned that Aminat would join us at the airport in Addis and fly with us to Tanzania. At about 10:00 I began to worry because she had not shown up. I could not reach her by phone so I texted Wick to try to call her. She finally answered and said her flight was the next day. NO, NO, NO I said, you are getting confused with am and pm. The flight is right now at 12:10 am thinking she thought it was noon. I doubted if she could make it with traffic and distance but I said to hurry, don't worry about packing, just bring her passport and come now. Later I found out that she was right, her ticket had been reserved for the following night at 12:10 am and she was not joining us. No one knows how that happened The next day she got on the midnight flight to Tanzania.
But, I had no way to get her from the airport at 3:40 am. Thankfully the owner of the airbnb was kind enough to line up a driver to pick her up. I set my alarm for 3:00 and waited - 4:00, 5:00, 6:00 - no word from her and the airbnb could not contact the driver. She finally called me from a borrowed phone to say no one picked her up. She was waiting at the airport and did not know what to do. The airbnb contact talked to the man from the borrowed phone, a taxi driver, and he agreed to bring her to the apartment. One hour later she had not arrived............it was a fifteen minute trip. Pendo from the airbnb had now come to the apartment and we were down the road in front of a hotel in case she was lost. He was sick with worry. - the driver would not answer the phone and we had no idea where she was. Finally, the driver answered and they had spent the hour fixing a flat tire on the side of the road and did not hear the phone. At 7:00 they drove up - Pendo and I were so relieved. It ended up that the scheduled driver had fallen asleep in his car in the parking lot of the airport and woke up with the daylight in a huge panic too! God keeps me on my toes so I will depend on him for sure!!!
Hi, I'm Cindy,
God literally set me on fire in 2001 with third degree burns on 40% of my body so that I could understand the needs and so that I would have a passion for other burn victims......Now, I travel and teach, helping care givers in developing countries around the world with practical ideas on how to offer a low cost, effective, rehabilitation program for their patients.
University of SC: Algernon Sydney Sullivan Award: Cindy Jackson, 1981 education graduate, wins top alumni award for work with burn patients in developing nations
"I had to get burned", Cindy Jackson turned personal trauma into force for healing
Improving the Lives of Burn Victims in Developing Countries Around the World!