Thursday, May 26, 2016

20 Super Cool and Odd Things about Life in the First World

Like the frog that doesn’t notice he’s boiling in slowly heated water, it’s easy to become immune to the amazing or strange things that surround us all the time. Lucky for me, whenever I swap from one world to another, I get to enjoy observing those little forgotten things over and over again (the rather less enjoyable side is called [reverse] culture stress but I’ll write more about another day.) Now that I’ve been in the US for two weeks (I'm starting my home assignment, after a couple of years in Papua New Guinea), here are a few of the things that have stuck out to me.

Sunday, May 22, 2016

Beans for Bible Translation!

I am a tea drinker, not a coffee drinker. While I can manage to choke down a cup of java to be social (an important skill for both living in a Papua New Guinean village and for sitting down with American church missions committees), not even spending my college years rooming with a passionate barista convinced my tastebuds to crave this bean-water.

But in mountains of the Papua New Guinea (PNG), coffee growing and production is a vital part of industry, and for the Kamano-Kafe translation team, it’s a critical pillar of support for Bible translation!

Thursday, May 12, 2016

A Day at the Table--Part 2

There is no such thing as a normal day of translation! But, here’s an example (including all real events), of what a day might look like! Don’t forget to read Part 1, posted last week!
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Phrase by phrase (photo by Amy Evers)
The morning tea break flies by, and now it’s back to work! We plow through a few more verses in Deuteronomy; these are harder—dealing with topics of lending and interest and material items that aren’t present in Kamano-Kafe culture. My back has a crick in it, and I start getting distracted as the team chatters on and on in a language where I only catch a few words, often with loud yelling and waving hands. But I catch just enough—“Actually, he’s talking to all of Israel here,” I cut into the conversation, “so we need to make everything plural.”

Thursday, May 5, 2016

A Day at the Table--Part 1

There is no such thing as a normal day of translation! But, here’s an example (including all real events), of what a day might look like! Check back for Part 2 next week!
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Franky settles into his "office" (photo by Amy Evers)
Nanterane! Good morning! It’s 8:30 am, and I step into the canteen, a little brown building that triples as trade store, coffee roaster, and translation office. James and Tuas, two of my Kamano-Kafe colleagues are already there, but I hear “Heeeey, we come!” and the rest of the team, Nathan, Kosseck, Korry and Franky spill in after me, everyone shaking hands and slapping backs.  Pastors, elders, fathers, youth leaders—they represent five different denominations coming together.  James begins hooking up computers, and Tuas distributes Bibles. Franky, a mother-tongue consultant, settles into the side room to work on adding his comments to an already team-checked translation.