So we’ve been working along the Thai/Myanmar border for the last two days and today we ventured into Myanmar. Granted we didn’t get our passports stamped but I think we can officially say we’ve been. We waded halfway across the Moei river which is the border. I planned to cross to the other side to say I’ve stepped foot in Myanmar but we heard a vehicle start up on the other side about the time we made it halfway. We never saw anyone (granted it’s a total jungle around here) but I thought I’d throw a rock to the other bank and call it good. Sometimes I make good decisions. After playing in the water for a half hour we made it back to the Thai side….and heard that vehicle motor start up again and leave 🙂 That was a new one for us. Hi mom 🙂
At lunch I got to shake hands with one of generals in the Karen army. Turns out he is the number two guy. One of our hosts, Roslyn <not her real name>, who has over 20 children’s refugee homes is a champion for the Karen people so she knows everyone and everyone knows her. Sitting with her at dinner and listening to her story was unbelievable. That’s the wrong word: it is believable. I just wish it wasn’t. It is her story so it is not my place to share but I think the first minute of the trailer from Rambo 4 would be a pretty good place to start for those interested.
The general was hoping we could come over to their base and take care of their soldiers. Roslyn and Jane didn’t have time to work out getting permission from the Thai border police to make it happen. They have offered it as an option in the future if we want. We would travel with an armed escort. I told Stacy no…..I think I’d like it too much.
We had some time at lunch to sit around and chat. I was having a tough time figuring out this Thailand/Myanmar/Burma/Karen conflict. Well it’s been going on for 60 years so I’m not the only one. I think the closest similarity would be the US government wiping out Native Americans a few hundred years ago. Now it is the majority Burmese wiping out the minority Karen, Wa, Kachin, Shan, and other peoples.
On the positive front, God is moving mightily here. The Gospel has been with the Karen people for a few generations so Christians like Roslyn truly understand the idea of temporal suffering and eternal glory.
Kiddos at today’s refugee camp were in better shape than yesterday’s. Much less fungal skin infections, lice and obvious malnutrition. We saw somewhere around 145 patients across two camps. One little girl will be getting a new pair of glasses…..in a few months. She has a super unique prescription that can’t be made locally so we’ll make them back home, get them to David, he’ll fly them to Chiang Mai, transfer them to Jane at church, then Jane will get them to one of her coworkers who comes back here more often. Maybe we’ll send two pair as a replacement may be a bit troublesome 🙂