Today we slept in and after breakfast went on a tour of the locations where Pastor Fabio has his ministry to the indigenous Cubeo people who live in the Vaupes region. We hired several 3-wheeled motorcycle taxis to take us around the city.
The first stop was to see the piece of land that was donated to Pastor Fabio to build a church building. The land is located not far from the center of town and has access to a well to provide water for the site. Pastor Fabio’s church is currently meeting in his rented home.
Next we went to the location where Pastor Fabio is building a mini-hotel with six rooms on the first floor to rent out to guests as a micro-business to help support his ministry. The second floor of the building is a residence for Fabio and Diana and their two sons, Nathan and Jeremy. Fabio is hoping to move from the home he is renting into this building sometime in July. The site has a well to provide water for the guests and Fabio’s family and is on the Mitu power grid. Fabio is awaiting funding to complete the six rooms below. This land is the site where Pastor Leonel lived with his family years ago and first started his ministry to the indigenous people of Vaupes and you can see the original building where they lived at the back of the property.
We next visited Fabio and Diana’s current rented home which is also where the church is meeting. Fabio also allows the leaders visiting from the jungle villages to stay in rooms built at the back of the property. We saw the eighty year old man who had been fitted for glasses and he was very pleased with his ability to see clearly again. We also saw several of the indigenous leaders and their families who were staying there before returning to their villages in the jungle.
After lunch we went for a boat ride on the river in two long boats (each made out of one solid piece of wood) with outboard motors. We went down the river and up a smaller side river and saw one of the villages there. On the way back we stopped at the Cubay artesan village where we saw how they make clay pottery and woven pot holders. It was very interesting to see the craftsmanship involved in making this unique looking pottery and the woven thatch holders made from materials found in the area. The pots were colored by rubbing different colored leaves from the jungle plants.
We went back to the hotel and took a brief siesta then went to dinner. After dinner Diana presented us with gifts provided by the tribal leaders we had been working with all week. Many of them are also craftsman and they gave us beautiful woven baskets and the women were given “man-catchters” which are woven tubes that you put your finger in and pull tight. We had a great time of fellowship with Leonel, Belgica, Gigliola and Claudia along with the dentist Luce and the eye doctor Patricia and her son and assistant Andreas. It was a great way to end our time in Mitu.