This is one of our rainy mornings, which do not come often out here, so things are rather quiet around us; they cannot have school on a day like this for it is too uncomfortable for the natives. This is our dry season now, but we generally have about two rains during this season; this is the first drop we have had here since we came.
They have inaugurated a mail service by airplane from Kinshasa to Luebo, and from there over to Bukama, which is the head of the Cape-to-Cairo railroad. They make the trip from Kin to Luebo in one day, whereas it takes us about two weeks by steamer. The first trip was made while we were at Kin waiting for the "Lapsley," but I don't think they have made any since, on account of wet weather, I hear, but I think they really intend to keep this up. This will enable us to get our mail at Luebo anywhere 'from two to six weeks quicker than by water, and especially in the dry season when only the smallest steamers get to Luebo.
We were very much disappointed upon reaching Luebo to find that Cisuaka was not there, and as we were there only a few days, he failed to show up in time to come over here with us. He has been hoeing a hard row, and has not earned a very good reputation during the past year; he and Nzeba are separated for the present, whether on account of the father-in-law who is a hard-boiled and hard-hearted fellow, or whether on account of him and his own trifleness, I can't say from here. However, I presume we can straighten him out when we get to Luebo. We found a very good boy to come over here with us, ILUNGA (or Elunga with the long E). So far he has proven to be a good find, not as smart as Cisuaka, but faithful and industrious, and good to take care of Max. Nzeba's two children are doing fine, and are fine looking little chaps, both boys.
We are quite well fixed up over here, and like it. In some ways it is better living here than at Luebo. With only three of us here we don't have the continual interruptions and eruptions that we have on larger stations. We like Miss Fontaine very much. She was deeply disappointed at having to leave Mutoto where she spent over a year, but seems to be liking it here. She is around thirty, or a bit over, I should say, rather quiet, but quite pleasant and sociable. She seems to be an excellent nurse, and judging from where she comes, Johns-Hopkins, Baltimore, where she had charge of a department,
it speaks well for her.
Dr. Moore, the dentist for the Methodist Mission, has just completed a tour of our Mission doing dental work for our folks. The Boards of the two Missions made an agreement about his doing our work for us. He came around with us on the "Lapsley" and stayed here waiting on a caravan to take I,im to one of their stations. He left this last Tuesday.
The Daumerys are due to reach Matadi June 22nd. The Wilds have gone down to Kinshasa with the "Lapsley" and will no doubt wait on them, so the Daumerys can take over the steamer, and the Wilds return to Luebo. The Bedingers may come with them, or some time soon; also the V. A. Andersons. The Bedingers have a new daughter born to them, about the middle of March.
They have a Tennis Club in Lusambo, and they invited Dr. Moore and myself down while he was here. I suppose I'll go down occasionally to play. The City of Lusambo is about two miles from our station, but the road is good and I can make it in about 20 minutes on my wheel.
It's time to send the mail right away. This letter is being sent by way of the Cape, South Africa.
With love to all. As ever,