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13 April

Page history last edited by PBworks 18 years ago

Thursday 13th April

Arabella Churchill

Have to leave tomorrow


Lovely to wake up back at beautiful Gapang. Sadly we have to leave this bungalow at Gapang tomorrow, Friday, though as they are all booked up with NGO workers coming for holidays. We decide to stay at a "Homestay" near Sabang Beach for the nights of Friday, Saturday and Sunday (14th, 15th and 16th) as we have shows that Muslim Aid have set up for us in the Sabang area. We talk to the man who runs the restaurant on the beach, and we manage to book a tiny room on the beach here at Gapang for Monday, Tuesday and Wednesday (17th, 18th and 19th), so that's a relief.


This is the programme


So this Puluia Weh trip currently looks like:

  • Wed 12th: Show 5.00 pm at Cot Abeu and stay Gapang (done, great success!)
  • Thurs 3th: Show 5.00 pm at Pria Laot and stay Gapang (done, great success!)
  • Fri 14th: Show 5.00 pm at Pasiran and stay Tuna Cafe near Sabang
  • Sat 15th: Show 5.00 pm at Perikamen and stay Tuna Cafe
  • Sun 16th:
    • Hopefully morning Show if Saril of Muslim Aid can fix one up,
    • and Show 5.00 pm at Sabang Fer and stay Tuna Cafe

  • Mon 17th: Drive back to Gapang - first whole day off (though it will probably mostly get eaten up with admin!) Stay Gapang bungalow on beach
  • Tues 18th: Show 5.00 pm SMA Dua and stay Gapang bungalow
  • Wed 19th: Workshops 5.00 at Iboih (where we did Show last time, who want us to go back) and stay Gapang bungalow
  • Thurs 20th:
    • Back to Banda Aceh and sort out endless admin and bits and pieces in morning, getting hold of more cash, buying plane and helicopter tickets, and looking for accommodation for next Tour.
    • 4.00-6.00 pm Show and Workshops for Youth off the Streets
  • Fri 21st:
    • Hopefully Show and Workshops for Elementary School in morning, and
    • then 5.00 pm Show at Lhoong Raya Barracks
  • Sat 22nd: Find suitable accommodation for next Tour and finish meetings, and, hopefully Show for Children on the Edge in the afternoon
  • Sun 23rd: Drive down to Aceh Raya to inspect IDES housing for Michael and hopefully do a Show there as well
  • Mon 24th: Fly back to Banda Aceh morning on the UN helicopter. Take equipment we are leaving (parachute, badge machine, speakers, etc.) to Yayasan Lamjabat. Afternoon flight to Medan and stay night at hotel near Airport.
  • 25th: Morning flight to Singapore; Evening flight to Heathrow


Time flies


Goodness how time flies! We are more than half-way through our time in Aceh now. We will be home in Glastonbury on the 26th - in less than 2 weeks! It will be really lovely to see Jess again, but I wish we could spend longer here really. Still we have achieved a lot, and will have achieved more by the time we have to leave - and hopefully (God, funders and other NGO's willing!) we will be back in November and December with a bigger team to do a bigger Tour. God knows there is a need for it! We are very pleased with how all the shows have gone - they have really given immense pleasure to lots and lots of children and adults.


I do diary and admin from 6-8 am, and then we go for an 8.30 dive. The visibility is better than last time we were here and it is a gorgeous dive. A bit more admin, and then we take the 11.30 dive too, which is lovely - quite a strong current and very exciting!


Ali and Katie and Flo and Thessa


At 4.15 Ali, who is married to Katie of Children of Sumatra, an excellent small NGO that organises operations for children with hare-lips out here, very kindly gives us a lift in his jeep to Pria Laot for a 5.00 pm Show. Flo (our dive master) and his lovely girlfriend Thessa come along as well to see what we are doing and lend a hand.


Winning over an unfriendly audience


We take the children off to an open space to try to play some parachute games while Hags sets up the show - but it is incredibly hot and we can't seem to score any parachute football goals at all (the 9m parachute, which we hadn't used before, was fresh out of its packing and just didn't seem taut enough - maybe I should get them to roll in the edges next time?), so we give that up fairly soon and head back to the main part of the village for the show. Hags has set up the PA and goes off to change and I put Sweet Georgia Brown on. The ipod seems very hot and sticky (and so do I!) and when Hags emerges, the ipod and I manage to completely fluff the music cues. To make matters worse, I had been leaning nonchalantly against a tree by the speakers, waiting for Haggis to emerge, and I suddenly realise that I am covered in very large black ants - I was leaning against their route up the tree! I get a couple of nasty bites and am a bit kerfuffled! The audience had not looked particularly friendly before the Show, but Haggis gets them laughing as soon as the Show starts and it is a great success.


Where is the phone?


Back to the Gapang Beach and download all the photos onto the laptop, quick barbecued dinner on the beach and back to our bungalow to sleep. Then, horror of horrors, we suddenly discover that we don't have our English phone with us. We search everywhere, and Hags goes back down to the beach to see if we had left it at the restaurant - but it was not there. Try to work backwards through the day. Jess rang me on it just before we left the bungalow for Pria Laot at 4.15 pm, and I asked her to ring me back once we were on the road. We talked when we were in Ali's jeep and then, I am sure, I put the English mobile back in my bag. Either it fell out in Ali's jeep, or when we were playing parachute games, or during the show - there were no other opportunities to lose it really. I think it unlikely that anyone has stolen it, as the people here all seem very honest and have treated us very well - we don't have Ali's number, but will get it off Flo first thing tomorrow and ring and see if it is in his jeep. If not, when Mr. Fir comes to get us at 2.30 pm tomorrow, we will be passing Pria Laot on our way to Sabang, so we can go and have a look and see if it got lost there. I am optimistic, but Haggis (whose phone it is, and all of whose phone numbers are on it) is extremely pessimistic and depressed - fingers crossed that we find it!













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