Tonight was the pancake supper at our church to raise money to buy antibiotics to send to Half the Sky Foundation. I'm happy to report that we raised $500+!!!!! More thanks are in order, too: Thanks Cera Products for donating a case of CeraLyte powdered electrolyte solution (treats diarrhea-related dehydration). And this was their way of saying "sorry, we can't really give you anything." I should say that their product is the only powdered rehydration solution I could find in the U.S. because Pedialyte no longer comes in powder form, and Kaolectrolyte's factory is not producing it right now as they were purchased by another company. As you can tell, I've learned a lot about the pharmaceutical industry in the last couple of weeks. If you're in New Zealand, you can get something called Gastrolyte, but otherwise you're looking at Gatorade, baby.
Donations should start arriving day by day as we fill up the suitcase bound for Chengdu. Even our Congressman, Bob Goodlatte, supports our efforts - his office offered to call TSA and give a heads-up to the Dulles Airport TSA luggage screening manager so nobody gives our courier the business when he checks the bag. Nice to have everybody on board.
Except the guy at the pancake supper who cornered our pastor to ask a theological question that began, "Now, China is technically a Godless country, right? So how do you explain..." I didn't hear the rest because I just really didn't want anything to dim my happiness about the many good people who are so eager to help. And the theologian probably gave a donation anyway, so there is hope for his soul after all :)
Every time we hit another 1,000 hits, you get a multimedia treat. Today's is grainy YouTube video of JieJie, MeiMei and a group of adorable little ones doing their first ribbon dance as part of JMU Chinese Student Association's culture show last semester. Just click on the title of this post to go to the video. (And then come back!)
According to the map, we just need someone from Africa to happen upon this travel blog, and we will have readers on all populated continents! (Anyone know someone in Antarctica you can send a link to? That would be too cool.)
Three weeks from now we'll be in Europe, so check in again soon for posts from Belgium, the Rhine and Moselle Valleys, and The Netherlands.
Collection of donations for Chengdu is progressing smoothly. We'll see what comes in the mail today. Our church is having a pancake supper Wednesday and taking a freewill offering for Half the Sky Foundation. Let's hope people are generous--aftershocks continue.