Pastor Sam Abuku, or Papa as everyone affectionately calls him, is one of our base leaders. He and his wife, Agnes, have been in the UK for the past three months staffing a Leadership Development School. They arrived back in Uganda last week for a YWAM conference in Jinja. Then, they were going to travel back to Arua with their vehicle, about a 7 hour drive.
We got a phone call Monday evening that they had broken down and were stranded about 2 hours from Arua and in the middle of the game park. Sharon, one of the staff here who has a vehicle, decided to go pick them up. She took with her Alex, who is from the area they were stranded in, and Samuel, a mechanic from Congo, and me, because her car is automatic and so I could drive if necessary.
We left around 8:30 and made great time out there. An hour and a half! Samuel assessed the problem: radiator tube was leaking and dirty radiator. The car was drivable after some bungee cord and water, but only for 10-15 km. Then we had to stop, let the car cool down, and refill the radiator. It was a beautiful night. The moon was full and bright enough for us to see well, the air was cool, the roads were empty. But that sentiment faded after a few hours of driving, stopping, driving, stopping. We wondered if it would be quicker to tow the car. So we attached the tow rope to Sharon's car and Papa's and drove at 20 km/hr for a while until we thought Papa's car was cooled down enough. Then we went back to driving, stopping, driving, stopping. Sometimes losing the radaitor cap becasue it shot up into the air from the pressure. I drove when Sharon got tired. We continued like this for hours! Sharon, exhausted, let me take over and I drove the rest of the night, helping Papa and Samuel everytime they got out to refill the radiator.
I couldn't believe it when I checked the time upon entering our compound in Arua. 5:50 am! It had taken us 9 hours to drive a 2 hour route! We all fell into our beds exhausted and slept the morning away. I was so glad we made it and even more glad I had decided to go so I could help drive and now I absolutely have to learn to drive a standard so I can do more driving! :)