Tuesday, September 25, 2012

It's raining, it's pouring... no one is snoring!

Well I'd say after the storm we had this morning, the rains have arrived! I think the rain started around 4:30am, but I didn't wake up fully until closer to 5am at which time I remembered my brand new fridge was still plugged in and there was some crazy lightening flashing around outside! As i unplugged the fridge I thought I'd check on June, which was a good idea as she was pretty scared. Not that I blame her the storm was right over top of us at that point, quite loud and she sleeps in the loft. We made a cup of tea as neither of us were able to sleep and (shockingly) the power was still on! I'm not sure how much rain came down but enough to water my garden for sure! It's going to be a loooong day though, thankfully it's my "easy" one. In other news, I've started going to the orphanage on Wednesday afternoons with June for a few hours to work with the Teenage "Mamas" (older orphans who are looking after their small siblings). There are currently 5 of them ranging in age from 11 - 15. they speak very little English and read/write little to none as 3/5ths of them have never been to school. June and I are trying to give them a few lessons in reading and writing; which they are very keen to do! We're also making them some skirts as the orphanage is very short in clothing supplies for their sizes. Must go, kids have arrived for class!

Sunday, September 16, 2012

The term is off to a good start, things seem to be running fairly smoothly. We have 3 new (part-time)staff this term: Jessica Russel (the the UK), and Mylon and Melina Ollila. Jessica is shadowing Lina in the mornings and helping out with others the rest of the day. She will be taking over my Grade 1 Scripture class in a few weeks and helping me with reading groups. Mylon has mostly been helping with maintenance but I believe he is also helping with a few of the upper classes. Melina is helping me with Kozo for a few classes(just supporting him with staying ontract etc)and is working in the office as well. They are all doing a lot of after school activities as well. So far they seem to be fitting in fine. I have been enjoying having June around. She heads out to the orphanage each morning, comes home for a lunch break and then does a few hours in the afternoon back at the children's home. She has dragged me out (willingly i admit) to help her a few times with organizing container boxes and painting the new building. Although it's not exactly relaxing, i don't mind as it's at least "different" from the work here. Please pray for our students as we begin our final term of the year. My prayer is that they will all put forth their best effort and finish well, but more importantly that they will seek Christ in all they do.

Sunday, September 2, 2012

Livingstone-Lusaka (pt 5)

Our taxi driver got the wrong time and arrived an hour early to take us to the bus. I was SO not impressed as I had only had a couple of hours sleep. We finally dragged ourselves up and got dressed and packed only to have him say he’d come back at the right time. TIA. We still managed to make it to the bus stop 15 minutes early. The ride back to Lusaka was not as nice as the one out (no business class) but I was really too tired to care. Lina met us at the bus station and took us out to Mugg n Bean for a very late (but much needed) lunch. That afternoon we all had a nap as we were all pretty exhausted. The next morning we began our ‘shopping spree’. As the container boxes hadn’t arrived yet my pantry was pretty bare and with June coming I needed to get some groceries. We spent the rest of our time in Lusaka getting groceries and other necessities. On our way back to Sakeji we again overnighted in Kitwe. Unfortunately I had another dentist appointment to keep as the fillings the last dentist put in didn’t work. I found a new dentist and spent more money having the same tooth filled again. I’d like to say this will be the last time; unfortunately I have to go back at Christmas to get a cap put on. Merry Christmas to me. :( The rest of the trip back to Sakeji was pretty uneventful; just really uncomfortable as the 3 of us were squished in the front the whole was as we had to carry back 4- 50kg backs of chicken food and a photocopier for the school as well as all our stuff. We did have a scary moment between Kitwe and Solwezi when we realized that we had forgotten to fill up with gas and basically rode into solwezi on fumes and prayers! Praise the Lord we made it home safe and sound. I think I’ll stay put for a little while now… at least until next holidays. :)

Livingstone – Day 2 (pt 4)

We had to get up extra early as we had an early pick up for our Horseback Safari. I was a little leery about going as I’m not exactly an avid horse lover or rider. For reasons unknown to myself, despite my telling them I was not an experienced rider, they put me on one of the younger horses, named Contemptuous. This horse obviously was named well as he took a disliking to me riding him and started acting up about twenty minutes into the ride. By that time I was pretty much ready to pack in the ride as well, those saddles were NOT built for comfort! The hotel that owned the stables also has some giraffe and zebra which we got to photograph (or as much as you can when riding a horse). As my horse was getting beyond my control, I traded with one of the guides’ for a horse who was more interested in eating then in going anywhere, but he was a little more my speed. We then proceeded to enter the Mosi-au-Tunya Game Park where we rode for the next 3 and ½ hours. We had been told that we might spot elephants, a multitude of deer-type animals, buffalo and perhaps even a rhino… we saw nothing. Nothing but trees and dead grass and the horses we were riding. I was really not impressed… and neither was my backside and my knees! By the time we got back to the stables after our 4 hr ride I was barely able to stand! Thankfully I didn’t have to as they had a nice lunch (cold meats and veggies) prepared for us in a cute little garden. The other 3 girls that had been riding with us were Swiss and we all got to know each other a bit. They had tons of questions when they found out I was out here essentially as a volunteer for several years. Instead of being dropped off back at our lodge (which would have been a better idea as we were so tired and dehydrated) we got dropped off at the Falls. We started down the path to the Boiling Pot, but after 10-15 minutes of descent we realized that it was a LONG way down and we were WAAAY too tired to climb up again afterwards, so we (very slowly) made our way back up and found a path closer to the falls to follow. I have to admit I was a little disappointed by the falls as there was barely any water in some parts, but then it is the end of the dry season. After many photo ops we dragged ourselves through the craft market (way more expensive there then in Lusaka) and headed ‘home’ for much needed showers. The night we dressed up a bit and went out for supper. We were both so tired and probably on our way to suffering from heat-stroke that we didn’t really enjoy our meal all that much. As we had an early morning and another one the next day we decided to turn in early. Unfortunately some young guys decided to keep the neighbourhood up with their drunken antics in the middle of the night so we didn’t get any sleep.

Livingstone – Day 1 (pt 3)

Wednesday morning we had a “full English breakfast” (Zambian style) before out 9:30 pick up. We were driven out to Mukuni Big 5 Safaris for our Lion Encounter. I have to say this was my favourite part of the whole trip! After a brief orientation ( basically telling us how to safely approach the lions) we were given walking sticks and were taken to meet the 2 lions we’d be walking with: Luba (one of 4 white lions in Zambia) and Nellie. Both lions were just under 2 years old. We got to “meet” the lions, petting them and letting them hear our voices. Then we started our walk, with a few interruptions for photo ops. We even got to hold their tails while they were walking! After that little adventure we went out for a nice Italian lunch, with homemade pasta and everything! Very yummy, but VERY filling so we went for a little walk about town before heading back to our room to freshen up. Our ride to the Sunset cruise arrived around 3:30pm to pick us up. When we arrived at the boat I unfortunately lost the batteries for my camera when they fell into the water. As it turned out I didn’t really need my camera as we only saw one impala and a few hippos, although the sunset was really pretty.

Lusaka – Livingstone (pt 2)

Tuesday morning the 3 of us squeezed into the front of the two-seater pick up, not the most comfortable but it was a short trip to the bus station. I was a little unsure of the bus trip for two reasons, 1) June gets car sick and 2) my last bus trip in Lusaka left much to be desired. So I was pleasantly surprised to find that a “business class” bus is much nicer. They even served us a snack and pop and we each had a small tv in the back of the seat ahead of us; of course there was nothing much to watch. Thankfully June was fine and the 6 hr. trip went pretty quickly. When we arrived in Livingstone we were able to quickly find a taxi to take us to our lodge. The Stone Guest House, though not as posh as advertised, was quite nice and comfortable. After settling in we had a taxi come pick us up to take us to supper. The driver was quite helpful and even took us to the craft market and grocery store before we went out for out lovely meal. After supper our cabby took us back to the lodge where we had a good night stay.

Sakeji-Lusaka (pt 1)

Lina and I leisurely drove down to Lusaka with a quick overnight in Kitwe. We stopped a few times for pictures, food and ice cream and diesel . On Monday the 20th we picked up a very tired June at the airport and then went to the RTSA (road traffic) place to see if I could get my licence. It was not to be… the lady didn’t like my medical paper, first saying it was not acceptable because it was done at a private clinic (Kalene Hospital) and then because it was too old (4 mths instead of 2). I have now come to the conclusion that I am not meant to get my Zambian licence! The rest of the day we spent “shopping” and sorting out June’s suitcases. That evening June and I packed out backpacks for our bus trip to Livingstone. We ended the day with a nice restaurant supper.

Saturday, September 1, 2012

quick update

i know it's been over a month since i blogged last. i did actually type blogs when I was travelling but i wasn't able to post them. now that i'm back with (semi) reliable internet i will cut and paste them into a mini-series of blogs starting tomorrow.