Wednesday, March 16, 2011

March So Far, Part 1: Getting To Lethem

To recap the last blog entry; These past few weeks, I went down into a town in Guyana's interior called Lethem. This was to attend a Special Assembly Day they hold their every year to try and help out with the congregation, and a smaller group that's started up nearby. I was going down with Tom and Michelle Sanches, along with a variety of other Witnesses I've met at various points. We had with us one of the Circuit Overseers and his wife (Leon and Eulietta Stevens), two elders from the Skeldon congregation, and a bunch of the ones in the Sign Language group in a nearby hall named New Amsterdam. We were all eagerly looking forward to the assembly that weekend.

Unfortunately, to get to Lethem you must endure a 14-hour bus ride, on a bumpy dirt road.

This is the nice section of road.

After a while on this, you come to the Essequibo River. To overcome this, the passengers come out of the bus, because then it backs down a slight hill onto an awaiting ferry. After the bus makes it safely on, the passengers file on as well. Then you disembark on the other side of the river and get back on the bus.

Most of the ride is the same. Bump, bounce, coast smoothly, repeat. But then at one point, long after it had gotten dark, we were approaching a big hill. One of the brothers one the bus with us named Lennox Sampson leans up and says "And here we have Devil Hill."

"Why is it named Devil Hill?" I asked.

Moments later, the bus hit a mud patch and slid sideways into a ditch, slid down the hill some, and got stuck. After a bit of fighting with it, the driver turns to everyone and says "We're too heavy. I need you all to get out of the bus and walk to the top of the hill."

3 AM, and fifty passengers are hiking. Thankfully, many of them (in particular Tom, Michelle, and the aforementioned Lennox) had experienced this on many occasions, and were prepared. Flashlights, etc.

So we reach the top of the hill where it levels off, and we watch with worry as the driver tries to wrestle this thing to the top of Devil Hill. He made it, amazingly! So we all pile back on, and slowly drift off to sleep.
Until Lennox says to us "And here comes The Hill Of Death!"

(okay, I'm making that last part up. The name of the 2nd one was Tiger Hill. And the same thing happened on it.)

Once it brightened enough for us to see (the bus left at 9:30 PM, so it was dark the whole time) we began to realize the place we were driving through was amazing! We were headed through the plains separating the Kanuku Mountains (is that a great name or what?).

Then finally, after what had spiraled into a 19-hour drive, we arrived in Lethem!
Which brings us to part two.......


  1. Poor kid was tired when he wrote this - my guess is that "I went down into a town in Guyana's interior called Guyana." He meant Lethem.

    Just my best guess.