The Bitung Flood – Step II – Purchasing and Packing the Supplies
This morning we went to the store to purchase the items needed for the flood victims. DeeAnn and I had been talking and said ‘what we need is an Indonesian Sam’s Club, but we’re sure no such thing exists.’ So after breakfast, President Mongan (the Manado Branch President) picked us up and took to IndoGrosir – the Indonesian version of Sam’s Club! Wow….another tender mercy…not quite as big square footage wise, but stuff was in cases, which is what we needed.
So filling up several flat-bed carts, we bought soap, shampoo, combs, toothbrushes, toothpaste, towels, diapers, eucalyptus oil (they use it on babies for everything) and snacks for the kids.
The 2 Freddy’s drive Angkots (“ong-coat”)- small buses that are multi-passenger taxi’s. So we hired them and their Angkots to haul everything back to the Church.
We then went to Thun Cafe, not far from the Church and right on the water in Manado – basically just a metal, open air restaurant and had fresh grilled tuna. Absolutely, the best piece of fish I ever ate in my life….beyond description and grilled to perfection. (Enak sekali!)
After lunch we had to go to the downtown market to get blankets and bed mats. We stayed in the car while Jemmy went in and negotiated, because if they saw us come in, the price would have been 2x for the bule’s! So this way, he got the price, then we went in and paid – worked like a charm!
We then went back to the Church to repack the boxes of items. We decided against packing a ‘kit’ – instead, we’ll just leave everything loose in the boxes and the people can take what they need. But first we had to get them into singles. For example, the case of shampoo was 6 bottles in a plastic sleeve, 6 sleeves to a case. So we opened the case, took the sleeves apart, and repacked the case so it had 36 single bottles of shampoo.
We had to do this for shampoo, toothbrushes, toothpaste, diapers and the snacks. Several members of the Branch showed up to help, which helped a lot.
It only took about an hour and a half, after which, we ordered pizza (Pizza Hut) for everyone, so it was great activity!
Tomorrow, we meet at 9 to load the truck – hopefully the bed mats will be delivered at 9 as promised. We couldn’t fit them in the Angots, so we are renting President Mongan’s truck (he’s a contractor) and hope to be on the road by 10. Hopefully, we will be able to have a nice hand-off ceremony with Jefferson or the Mayor’s wife (apparently she’s playing a role in this, too) or someone from the city.
Stay tuned for Step III – The Delivery!