October 14, 2006 - Saturday - Northern, Laos - 7:30pm - Laos Time (11 hours ahead of EDT in the U.S.) - Report submitted by Joe Hurston - President - Air Mobile
Yesterday, we flew from Bangkok to Chiang Rai and we were met by Dr. Henley who had flown in a couple of days ago. We immediately hit the road for the north Thailand border on the Mekong River. I have so many memories of the Mekong from all the reports from the Vietnam war era. Well, it's a huge, swift, muddy river running quite high as this area is coming to the end of the rainy season. Down in southern Thailand, there is major flooding. When we arrived in this border town, it was dusk. We were all tired, Dr. Steve Henley, Barbara and I had just completed a long flight half way round the world. That old jet lag just hits you like a ton of bricks.
Just after our team settled in for the evening, a very strong earthquake hit us. It felt just like a big truck ran into the side of the hotel. Brought back a lot of memories of the tsunami that hit Indonesia, India and Thailand. It took me a while to get back to sleep.
Early this morning we headed down to the river and crossed the Mekong on one of those skinny boats (about 4 feet wide and 20 feet long). Our team of 12 loaded it up and shot across the very swift moving Mekong. On the other side of the river is Laos. After clearing customs and immigration, we hit the road for a 10 hour truck ride across the country. One of our vehicles bottomed out on the muddy road and sprung a transmission leak. We squeezed our 12 man team into one pick up truck and continued our grueling journey across Laos.
I have spectacular photos, but I'm in a small internet cafe' in the northern Laos and just a few miles from China and can't download them. Hopefully, I'll be able to get some on the blog and share this adventure with you.
Tomorrow, we head out to deploy some Vortex Voyager water purifiers. That's the most exciting part of this whole mission, bringing clean water to those that so need it.
I'll make this report brief, as I'm delerious with jet lag and just sore and bleary eyed. Thanks for following our journey. Feel free to write me at: firstname.lastname@example.org. Not sure when I'll be able to update the blog. As always, really appreciate your prayers!! God Bless!!
President - Air Mobile