It all started like this, I have only two weeks to go until a translation consultant comes from the U.S.A. to check the 33 chapters of Genesis and Exodus I have prepared. Last week I estimated that I needed about 25 more hours of help from an Isnag speaker and was really praying I would be able to get it. The flight program we have been using to get in and out of our village has closed and we are waiting on funds to ship a helicopter over, so I am a bit stranded out here in civilization.
Last Tuesday, I planned to go looking for a language helper in the area in the photo above. In the center of this community there is a small community of people from our village in the mountains. But, Tuesday morning I had to take James in for a foot x-ray. We finally made it through the process and found out that he had a bad bruise, but nothing was broken. By this time I was running late. I worked my way through traffic and made it to a large mall on the other side of town. Across the highway from the mall is the community where some Isnag live. I parked at the mall, but locked my keys and bag with Translation Notes in the van. I tried walking around the van 7 times and making trumpet sounds, to no avail. (Not really, but I did try many things and the only reason I didn't try the trumpet was that I didn't think of it at the time.)
I finally decided to leave the van, keys, and translation notes and go look for my Isnag friends. I found them or rather they found me and I had a visit with them. I found out that the young lady in the picture, whom we have known for years in the village, doesn't have work at the moment and is glad to work on the translation with me. The fellow is a long time friend. He offered me the use of his table and chairs as a workplace.
I headed back to the van very happy that the Lord had provided me with language helpers. When I got back to the garage a friendly guard took me to a "locksmith" (guy with a wire in the picture above) and he had the van opened in no time.
I have been able to return to my Isnag friends several times and plan at least two more visits next week. My translation work is on schedule and I'm very thankful for that.
There is another outpost of our village in a different part of Manila and I have been able to get some help there too. On Friday, Heidi, Carrie, and Thomas came along with me. This is Carrie enjoying holding an Isnag baby.