This week I’ve been a ‘grass widow’. That’s what my mom-in-law would call it when Dwight’s dad had to travel to churches for weeks at a time while she stayed home. This week Dwight is traveling north to Tete as well as other places I won't bother to list. I could have gone of course. But somehow the idea of not knowing where I’d lay my head at night then spending all day in seminars with only men...didn’t exactly appeal to me. I told Dwight I’d go with him. Just not THIS time J. You could say I’m home alone in our house if you don’t count 2 dogs, a cat, and a few mice that the first 3 are after! Work-wise, the mission staff, Nat, Salena and I have been holding the fort down. Things started out with a bang on our first day as the generator began to make a ‘funny sound’ about the time Dwight was heading out. Great. Our lives revolve around the generator so this was not a good start! Then we hit a few bumps with the river pump pipes bursting. Thankfully we’ve got good help and they’re great at patching things up. We also had a fire cross our boundary onto the farm so had to summon all staff to go put out the fire for the better part of an afternoon. After those initial bigger crises, I basically rotated from one work site to the next checking on progress and trying to solve problems. I really don’t like trying to solve problems that I don’t have a clue about, like cow shots and finding engine bearing numbers. But I’m learning. Hopefully I’ll never need this information again!
This week we also were supposed to get the health post spiffed up for the Health Dept’s Vice-Minister’s visit . The whole community got to work cleaning up around the school and central water well too. We were busy as bees. We painted our health post’s bed white (upon request), repainted the walls (white as well since that was what we had), put in shelves and painted them, hung new curtains and even got some crisp new linen from the district hospital!
Wow. The place looked real snazzy by the time we were done. Then on the appointed day, we sat and waited for our VIP visit. While we waited, we treated the sick. And treated the sick some more. At one point 3 little boys came in and sat on our freshly painted white cement bench. They were very dirty and I cringed as they sat down and squirmed around as little boys do. But a health post is for treating the sick, not for staying spotlessly white. Especially here where we live in the dirt! Our important visitor never did come that day, or on the following 2 days. I guess he got busy elsewhere. Who knows, maybe he’ll come yet. In the meantime, we’re enjoying the new look!
I had to get a shot of these brothers. Their mom has just moved into the area and arrived basically with the clothes on her back. She has a piece of land, but is starting her life anew from scratch. We’ve been giving her odd jobs here (below: in the garden) and there so she can earn some cash. She works half days and while she works, they stroll around and play in the shade. I give them cookies or cupcakes when I have them and their faces always light up at the sight of treats, of course! Now even the little one greets me with a smile.