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Mission Survey Trip

We are now looking for a sponsoring congregation to oversee our ongoing work in Tanzania. Please let us know if you hear of any churches who are interested in Tanzania, or generally in Sub-Saharan Africa.

We are currently planning another mission trip to Tanzania in February, 2015. We hope to spend about 3 months there, working to build a rainwater collection system for Tanzania Christian Clinic, and learning more about the community and the culture.

Ralph & Twyla Williams, Lewis & Tammy Short

Ralph & Twyla Williams, Lewis & Tammy Short

Last weekend, we traveled to Nashville to help our teammates Lewis and Tammy Short, as they were making final preparations to leave for Tanzania on Sept. 10. We hope to spend some quality time with them in February/March, making plans for our work together.

We traveled to the Monduli Region in Tanzania during May 2014, on an exploratory mission. We were conducting a needs assessment to see whether local needs might lend themselves as evangelistic tools. We kept a daily journal at Williams Tanzania Mission on facebook.

Early in our visit, the District Commissioner listed what he considered the two largest needs of the community. There is a great need for rainwater retention and water purification. And there is a very high ratio of illiterate adults, which has multi-generational social and moral consequences.

We began asking whether anyone had attempted adult literacy programs, and whether there was any demand for such. We found two programs, which had failed because they required payment and/or because they required people to travel to a fixed location in the evening. The people who operated those programs spoke frankly about the demand, and about the causes of their failures.

As a result, we began asking about volunteer programs, and whether people would volunteer to teach others in their home or in a convenient local setting. We found that there is a Swahili term for volunteering, and we found a similar program, which trains local volunteers to teach others.

We believe we could build an adult literacy program, training local volunteers, and using the Bible and other available materials in Swahili. We would then have two immediate audiences to teach: our volunteers, and those whom they are teaching. We would use this as an evangelistic outreach, to contact and teach people who otherwise would never encounter Bible teaching.

In addition, we arranged to partner with a local church to outfit their building with rainwater collection barrels. We told them that if they raised money for one system, we would raise money for another system. A similar building nearby has six to ten 10,000-liter barrels for rainwater collection, and we believe they could do the same, in time. This church has a new building with a baptistery, but has no way to fill the baptistery, so the water collection system would fill that need, and allow them to serve the community with water as well.

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Tanzania Mission Survey Trip

Dear Family and Friends: 
Twyla and I are preparing for a mission survey trip to Arusha, Tanzania, where we are looking for ways we can help bring Jesus to the Maasai. We need to raise about $5000 to cover the round-trip airfare and incidental costs for our trip. We would like to invite our family and friends to be involved in this work. 
First–and most important–we need your prayers. We need wisdom as we prepare for this.
Second, we need money. 
Our church will provide oversight of incoming funds for our mission survey trip. If you would like to give, please message me and I will provide you with the details for contributing to our trip.

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Check out this nifty helmet!

Skully

Skully helmets (@SkullyHelmets #iwantskully) have Bluetooth and 180-degree rear view, as well as GPS, on a head-up display.

 

Key Features:

  • Lightweight, Aerodynamic Shell
  • 3D laser-cut foam for a perfect fit
  • Fully adjustable flow-through ventilation
  • Anti-fog, anti-scratch, anti-glare face shield
  • Quick release chin strap and visor
  • SKULLY SYNAPSE (TM) Heads Up Display system with voice control
  • Visual GPS navigation
  • 180 degree wide angle rearview camera
  • Bluetooth connectivity to smartphone
  • Internet connectivity via smartphone

Check it out:

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Good Info on Distracted Driving from NEJM

CaptureThis link takes you to a study about Distracted Driving, and includes a good video explaining the study in layman’s terms:
http://www.nejm.org/doi/full/10.1056/NEJMsa1204142?query=TOC#t=articleTop

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One of the babes learning to cook

The subtitle of my blog is Bikes, Books, Babes

If you read the “about” page, you will know that the “Babes” part refers to my grandchildren. They do lots of fun stuff, but this video is particularly worth posting. Enjoy!

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Three Book Reviews

 

 

 

 

I recently reviewed three books for the Christian Chronicle.

The books are:

  • Kingdom Calling by Amy Sherman
  • Work Matters by Tom Nelson
  • Work, Love, Pray by Diane Paddison

Here’s a link to the reviews on the Christian Chronicle website: Book Reviews

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Expectation Bias

One of the deadliest errors drivers make is called “Expectation Bias.” We see what we expect; and we fail to see the unexpected.
I witnessed an accident last week, which perfectly illustrates the problem of Expectation Bias. In fact, I was very nearly involved in it myself.
The driver who caused the accident was Westbound, but turning Left, to the South. The other driver, directly in front of me, was going straight through the intersection. An Eastbound tractor-trailer was in the left-turn lane, waiting to turn North.
Because of the position of the left-turn lane, the tractor-trailer blocked the view of each of the drivers involved in the accident. The lady who was turning left looked at the intersection and it appeared to be clear, except for the truck which was waiting to turn left, opposite to her. The other lady, passing the tractor-trailer, could see that the intersection was clear in front of her, but because of the tractor-trailer, she couldn’t see the SUV that was preparing to turn left, in front of her. My illustration shows the 3 vehicles, and the field of vision of each driver.
Either driver could have avoided this accident, if they had recognized the hazard presented by the tractor-trailer. Each of them should have had mental alarms going off: “Danger, Will Robinson!” Rather than looking for the hazard, they were looking for a clear intersection, and that’s what they saw. They were victims of their own expectations.
Expectation Bias is a real threat to motorcyclists: Other drivers, expecting to see cars or trucks, fail to see motorcycles, even when they are in plain view. A friend of mine was struck by his neighbor (a biker himself), who said that he actually saw the motorcycle, but it failed to register.
How many of us get further into debt than we can afford, because we have such a rosy view of the future? We expect everything to work out fine, so we whip out the plastic. Expectation Bias strikes again!
As a rider, one of the most important safety lessons is learning to see hazards everywhere. Expectation Bias is a threat to our ability to recognize hazards; we also need to recognize our expectations (and the expectations of other drivers) as a potential hazard.
One of the fellows who taught me to ride told me that I should always pretend I was driving a Semi. “Learn to occupy as much space on the road as a tractor-trailer rig; Don’t let anyone get inside your space.” We overcome other drivers’ expectation bias by making ourselves more visible and audible, and by forcing them to treat us like a larger vehicle.

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In praise of new tires… and great customer service

Several people “liked” my post a while ago, when I got a new back tire on my bike.

The tire was faulty. It kept thrusting the rear end of the bike back and forth, sideways. Not a good feeling at highway speeds. So I got the guys at Cycle Gear to replace it. They gave me an identical tire, a Michelin Pilot 3.

I rode on that tire for nearly a month, and kept having issues with it. It felt great at speeds below 55, but at highway speeds, it was unstable.

I did some research… Michelin doesn’t recommend any of their tires for my bike. On the BMW sites, everyone said they were riding on the Metzler tires that BMW puts on the bike, or on Avon tires.

Last week, I ordered a new set of Metzler tires. What a difference! The bike feels safe to ride again.

Best part: The guys at Cycle Gear swapped out the tire without a comment. They were surprised that I had trouble with it, but they honored their 100% Satisfaction Guarantee, even though I was not returning an “undamaged” item. I did ride on the tire for a month or so.

Kudos to Cycle Gear!

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Hello world!

Welcome to my blog. I hope  to post regularly about several topics:

Bikes: Motorcycles, Riding and Safety. Human Factors & Risk and Error management, particularly as applied to motorcycles and life in general.

Books: The books I’ve been reading; and The Book.

Babes: the cute (and not-so-cute) things my grandchildren are up to.

 

 

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