Unless otherwise specified, all reports are from Brother Chuck
This morning was a beautiful morning as I walked down to the Chapel to get Gabriel, praying and talking to the Lord all the way. I checked Gabriel’s brake fluid as usual, and as usual, it was low so I added a little. Then I looked to see how much differential fluid has leaked out, and it didn’t look too bad, so I cranked her up, praying that the Lord would protect us as we travel around Port au Prince. I drove up to Dottie’s and parked and went inside to have breakfast with the team. Yesterday we had spent $150.00 to have the gas tank removed so we could check the fuel pump. The mechanic thought he had found the problem, so we were optimistic that it would run well today. As you will remember from yesterday, we had trouble with Gabriel with the seal leaking in the front differential. To try to make a long story short, Gabriel broke down on us half the way to the work site. I felt the metal against metal in the front left wheel, and pulled over. The differential really wasn’t that low, but I added some gear oil to it and it got us to the work site–Praise the Lord. When we got there, Blanco (young Haitian man who we send to mechanic school) was waiting for me to show me his mid-term grades. He had made great grades in all his classes, and had a smile from ear to ear. These are the kind of things that bring you back to Haiti.
Since Blanco has been going to mechanic school, he started helping Karl pull the seal in Gabriel, while I went to run errands in the van. Karl had had to stop several times on the way down, so we knew it was not fixed. Simon went with me, and it started sputtering as soon as we left, which was about 9:30. Simon and I went and bought some ham, turkey, bread, mayo and mustard for the team for lunch, and I went to borrow a tool to take the seal off with, and it took 2-1/2 hours–it was only about 7 miles.
When we arrived, Karl and Blanco had taken the wheel off and were just waiting on us. Naturally, the gear puller didn’t work, so they had to cut the metal seal to get it out.
Simon and I grabbed a quick bite and got back on the road, having to stop about every 100 yards, as people blew their horns at us. After going to a Ford place here to see if they had a fuel pump and a modulator (which they didn’t), we needed to go to a hardware store to pick up some screws and roofing nails. They had some screws but no roofing nails, so we bought the screws and decided we needed to head back to the work site; it was 2:50, and we usually leave the work site around 3:00. I thought, at the rate I’m going I will not make it to the work site in time, and I wasn’t sure that Karl had fixed Gabriel. I called him and he said he was almost finished, so I told him I had better try to get to Dottie’s. I didn’t want the van to break down on the side of the road. Simon and I had stopped and started it so many times I couldn’t turn the key anymore, my fingers were so sore. Simon had to reach across and turn the key for me. Simon tells me that he is praying that the Lord will give us a Land Cruiser soon. We did make it back to Dottie’s, and Dino the mechanic met us there; Dottie had called him for us. He worked on it for a while and told me he will come back tomorrow and drop the tank and pull the fuel pump out again and he thinks he knows a place downtown that might have one.
Karl and Blanco will be working on the Gabriel’s other wheel tomorrow, so please be praying for us that the Lord will fix His vehicles. We sure could use them.