By Jill Riepe
My day started normal enough. I got up at 5:30 am and got ready to run with the dog. However, as I was getting ready, I noticed that my new kitten, Piita (means speedy in Ap Ma), had had an accident on the bathroom rug. Well, that meant today would be a laundry day as well. I took Bella, the dog, for her run. She did extremely well even staying with me when I let her off the leash on the airstrip. Of course, the doggy treats that came in a recent care package may have been the reason behind this. We did 5 laps around the airstrip and headed back. When we got back to the house, I pumped water into the header tank on top of my house so I would have plenty of water to wash clothes and drink for the day. I started getting ready for the day and threw the laundry in the bath tub with some soap. As the tub was filling, I made myself some coffee and refilled the water filter. Then I heard, “Ma, ma, dispela voltmeter, em i no wok.” It was my waspapa, Maso. The one of the batteries in the translation office was not running the inverter so the translators were not able to charge their computers from it. I had given him the voltmeter to check to see if the battery was actually charged. However, something was wrong with my voltmeter. Since I had changed the battery for that the day before, I doubted that the battery for the voltmeter was dead. So I suggested that we borrow a voltmeter from the missionaries in the next village over and I offered to do that since I had to go to radio sked at their house. I checked my watch. It was 7:56 am and sked was at 8:15 which meant that I needed to hurry so I could make the walk in time to get to sked.Pioneer Bible Translators has a scheduled radio time every work day at 8:15 am for village teams to check in and to communicate with the national translators in other allocations. I got my coffee and slipped on my sandals and walked up to Samban. I borrowed a voltmeter from the Jesse and Karie Pryor who work in Samban doing community development. It was in the midst of the radio sked that I realized that I had forgotten to turn the water off on the tub. As soon as my traffic (what I needed to communicate/what others want to communicate to me) was done, I rushed down to my house to turn off the facet. Fortunately, the water did not overflow, but now there was enough water in the tub that I decided to wash my bed sheets so I threw them in there as well. I let those soak in the soapy water and I walked over to talk with my wasmama, Dani, and deliver the voltmeter so that my waspapa would be able check the battery.
As I was stomping on my laundry to get the dirt out, I heard, “Golo, golo, ñin komputa miña bola kal.” It was my was-uncle who is working on the Old Testament translation team. He had come to me earlier and said that he wasn’t able to get his computer to save his work. I had worked with him yesterday, but had not been able to recreate what the problem was so I told him the next time he had the problem to put the computer on hibernate and come see me. I explained that I was doing my laundry and that once I had the clothes out in the sun I would come help him. I finished washing my clothes in the tub and rinsed them and hung them on the line that I put up in front of the house. I have the line in a loop attached to two pulleys so I can pull the line and the clothes get hung up under my eaves. This protects them from any sudden rain storms as long as the wind is not too strong.
Then I went to see my was-uncle at the translation office. I had him show me what he was doing. We discovered that the problem was that when he saved he typed Sam 100:1-5, but the computer did not allow (:) in the file name, therefore he was getting an error message and it wasn’t saving. I explained the problem to him and showed him that he should type Sam 100.1-5 and it would save. I was so glad that it was a simple fix; however, it’s sad to realize that he’d been struggling with this for about 2 months because he had no one to help him. I headed back to my house and mixed up my bread for it to rise as I write this story. Whew! All this happened before 10 this morning.
Not every morning is exciting as this, but generally there are things that come up and that pushes back the work that was planned for the day.
Jill is a Bible translator among the Ap Ma language.