Wednesday, June 13, 2007

Afrikan Adventure: Come and Go

The week has been a week of the airport. Tuesday saw the arrival of Megan and Patti…who are these people you might ask? I shall reveal it. Megan is one of the missionaries with ACTION Zambia who was home for three months who is involved with helping with adoptions here in Zambia. Patti is here adopting a very cute two year old girl named Mary. The adoption process can be an adventure into the uncertain as you are dealing with the government who seem to make decisions on a whim with no real consistency which can lead to much frustration. But so far the process is going very well which is awesome and Mary has been allowed to come stay with us at the farm.

On Thursday we bid farewell to “Lil’ Shannon” who went back to California after her three months here. I shall miss her and the connection we shared in name, although I will not so much miss being referred to as “Big Shannon”…although here in Zambia the bigger you are the better. People will often “compliment” someone with calling them fat.

We also said “Welcome on back” to Glenn Ripley, part of our team her who has also been in the states the last couple months, and his daughter Grace to complete their adoption process.

And then it was an exciting day this past Monday when I received my first visitor! My friend Amber Balzer, who has been home schooling her cousins in Malaysia for the last 9 months, has come to spend three weeks visiting on her way back to Canada. Because if I remember my geography right, Zambia is on the direct route back to Vancouver. So the farm is much more populated than it has been in weeks past, which I quite enjoy. Having a friend here and new faces who enjoy a good laugh and will participate with my in some good clean shenanigans with me has been like water for my soul…or chicken soup, if you will.

My afternoons with the netball girls are going well. They continue to find comedic value in my playing and spend much time saying things in Nyanja and laughing that I don’t understand. I usually just laugh along with them and play on. We have never played by the official Netball rules until one day last week when all of the sudden the rules went into effect so when I continued the way I had come to know they thought it hilarious and couldn’t understand why I didn’t know what I was doing.

There is a woman who injured leg about two weeks ago and the result has been a very swollen and painful ankle/lower leg so I have gone to visit her most days after playing. We are still not sure what is wrong, our nurse thought it was a blood clot but the measures we took to help the healing process seem to not be working. So I think I will try and get her to a clinic very soon if our nurse can’t help her. It has been a good opportunity to get to know the women in the area and even though I’m pretty much useless in the medical realm it’s been good to just be able to visit with her. It has also been an eye opener in how we from the west and Zambians, or Africans in general, tend to differ in the way they view the spiritual realm. The women think that the foot is a result of witchcraft, while we tend to view in strictly in the sense of a physical medical issue that has no spiritual influences. So it’s a good opportunity to really evaluate and think through some of these issues.

It was a sad day today as we buried a baby from the orphanage that we work with. Dalitso died very suddenly and unexpectedly last week which was very hard on the house mothers who took care of him. It has been my first real experience with a funeral and death since I’ve been here and really makes it hit home.

I continue to love the people of the church I’ve found here and getting involved. On Sunday we butchered the song “Power of Your Love” like I’ve never experienced before. After stopping and starting again half way through, the woman who sang the solo for the second verse took us into a completely new and unexpected key resulting in some very unpleasant sounding accompaniment coming from the keyboard and my guitar as we continued in the key that was planned for. But what can you do…I kind of like the bad music…it makes the worship more about God than the music itself.

And in my cultural experience of the week…I hate a whole chicken head, brains, eyeballs, beak, some sort of feather/furry exterior, the whole kitten caboodle. And I really didn’t even mind it…it tasted like chicken…hmmm, strange as that is.

So that’s been another week in Zambia. God continues to work in unexpected ways and teach me and stretch me. I thank you once again for your love and support.

God Bless,


“All who are thirsty, all who are weak, come to the fountain, dip your heart in the stream of life. Let the pain and the sorrow be washed away, by the waves of his mercy, as deep cries out to deep…”

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