Monday, April 26, 2010

a few pictures

ok so i have been holding out on posting preggy (as they say here in zim) pictures but here are a few. sorry they are all of me and few include dan but someone has to take the photo!

today: the pregnant ladies of the house (we think the cat is pregnant at least.)
today: so much goodness for $1!
april 11 in the "i'm so glad i brought this green dress last year"
april 16 at kariba dam with claire and julie
after our Easter date!


Friday, April 23, 2010

holiday at Kariba

this past weekend was independence day in zim and therefore a three day weekend. we took this opportunity to head north to lake kariba. lake kariba is a huge man made lake (250km long!--google it!) which formed 50 years ago when the dam wall was finished. we were excited to see the dam and even more excited that the sluice gates were open while we were there making the view simply amazing.
we rented a house with two other ladies- our friend julie and one of her friends claire who has quickly become one of our favorite people in zim. it was nice to be with other missionaries- talking about the trials that we find as foreign workers here and enjoying God as we rested from our work. the house also came with a jolly man who was the cook/guy who takes care of everything while you are there. thankfully he is shona so we got to practice our shona and learn new things about zim from him. since none of us are used to having constant house help we didn't utilize him as much as other guests- he often told us that we weren't giving him enough work to do. i can't really describe it well so i will just let a few pictures do the talking.

Saturday, April 10, 2010

a very Zimbabwe day

Last Saturday reminded me of many things I love about Africa--hospitality, simplicity, are-you-kidding?-roads, communal living, and that attitude that says to the persistent problem, "I bet this will work..." Joseph, Vivian and four other relatives stayed at our house Friday night, to give us a head start the next morning. We left only 30 minutes later than scheduled, due to underestimating the time it takes for four adults to take a bath. It's a beautiful drive from Harare to Mutare, and that went off without a hitch. We passed through Mutare town and about an hour later turned off the road on to a manageable dirt path which led us to Joseph's parents' home, their "musha." I so enjoyed their homestead--fields of sorghum, a hot spring, countless baobab trees, a river, livestock, and quietness. Oh, and watermelons--who would have thought watermelons thrive in their hot, arid climate--but thrive they do. Three of us went through half a dozen--just splitting them open, reaching in and grabbing bites. After a while you can just drink out of them like giant cups.

The watermelons added to the guinea fowl eggs and bread made for a fine lunch in my opinion, but of course we were expected to stay for a real meal--sadza. Joseph kindly reminded his mother that we still had to trek three more hours to Vivian's musha that day, and she kindly let us leave. (I know it's so un-African to stay only 4 hours, but something has to give when someone's "oh, and while we're in that part of the country..." consumes 4 extra hours.) So off we go to Vivian's rural home, in Rusape. Her parents live much farther down a much-less-defined dirt path. The rainy season had taken its toll, meaning we drove very slowly to straddle gullies and dance around uneven ground. Finally we arrived, although it was within a few minutes of our ETA back in Harare (hmmm..). They were happy to see us and understood that this was just a drop off (I was only returning with Joseph-the rest of them stayed). Still, they quickly made a small pot of sadza and we nearly burned our fingers eating it as quickly as possible. Not that we were trying to be rude, but driving in the dark poses huge we were about to be reminded.

Just out of eyeshot, I drove a little too close to a peg in the road (nobody knows what it was doing there) and slashed open my right rear tire. I immediately knew this was going to be a long night. Being in a village, we were quickly surrounded by people trying to be helpful. Some were helpful, and some had been drinking (it was a holiday weekend, after all). The first delay was caused by one helpful guy grinding the sides of my allen key in the process of removing a stuck screw. After an hour, we finally got the spare on and inflated (thankfully someone had a hand pump). After 5 seconds of driving on it, the tire separated from the wheel, and so we were back at square one. Eventually someone volunteered to walk to his home (about 20 mins away) and get a not-so-bad wheel from his "scotch cart," which is a cart usually pulled by cows or donkeys. Why not? I said. Anyway, he got the wheel, we put it on, we started driving, and it lasted all the way to Harare. Actual arrival: 1am.

Monday, April 5, 2010

maneta here?

that means "are you tired?" to which i always respond, "ndaneta (i'm tired)". this most often happens at church after i have stood to try to sing and sat back down 6 times, sat through a sermon constantly changing positions on my hard chair, and getting through about half of the line of people to shake my hand after church. (everyone shakes everyone's hand forming a big circle as we end church- about 200 people.)
this sunday, i got the same question and after i answered the lady asked if something was wrong. i replied no, just tired. then she asked, "is it the stomach? because it is getting bigger?" and i said yes, it is the stomach getting bigger. :) only a few people openly talk about my pregnancy at church- the rest just comment on my stomach getting bigger.
we did get to share with our close friends that we are having a GIRL and we got lots of smiles, hollers, and high fives. :)