Friday, November 06, 2009

Pumulani: "Rest" after a busy week

A tree frog, that I think is ugly, creepy even, rests in his favorite spot on our veranda on top of the dartboard. He doesn’t hang out on the floor with the cute but ordinary frogs because, after all, he’s a “tree frog”. He hunts where it’s high. The thought of leaving him behind when we move to our new house has been a pleasant one for me.

It's been a crazy week, here's a recap:

One morning this week during devotions we were asked to pray for a child who, it sounded like, was in a coma. He had been treated for malaria at the health post the previous day but had deteriorated during the night. As soon as prayer time was over we headed to where the child lived. Getting there was like making my way through a maze since all I had to follow was a footpath that meandered through the bush. Vehicles don't like bush footpaths.

and through village yards.
At one point we could go no further by car so I parked and we got out to walk the rest of the way. As we started off down the path we were met by 2 young men who brought the sad news that the child had just passed away.

This week we received our first lot of the new malaria treatment, Coartem, that the Health Department recently added to the socorrista kits (Ernesto and his kit).

The socorristas will now also be doing finger-prick testing in order to diagnose before treating, whereas before, treatment was based solely on symptoms. This is a huge step toward improved health care for rural communities.

This was the first week of VBS (Vacation Bible School) at the mission school. I only popped in for a brief moment but from what I could tell, they were having a great deal of fun.

The puppet show (above though hard to see well here) was a bit of a job behind the scenes (below: Keren and Glenn),

but clearly a success even with little Tendai.

This is Bero with his suitcase. He will be making the trip to South Africa with us next week to consult a plastic surgeon re possible correction of burn contractures. He’s pretty excited about the trip!

A few of the week's critters:

Yesterday, while we were packing, this same tree frog sat perched on a shoe shelf we had to move. One of the guys scooped him up and flung him into the grass. There are plenty trees out there and he needed to find a new home anyway. So long "buddy.

Here's one of the ordinary frogs. Cute huh?

For the last few nights we’ve had an extraordinary number of Cicadas beating around our lights. Here, Murray “braves” the doorway to our place. I think he's actually starting to like them.

And last but not least in the week’s events, we moved! Well, at this point we’re halfway there anyway. Emptying the big cupboard (above) so we have cupboard space at the new house (the cupboards there are, as yet, unfinished by a long shot). But a big cupboard like this doesn’t do bush footpaths well either. All those trees get in the way! So the guys had to take the road. That in itself was kind of funny, at least from where I stood.

I told Dwight that in order to move into a house with unfinished cupboards, I at least needed a counter top.
Here, he, Murray and Gabriel do an amazing job with some local hardwood.

The almost finished product is installed with a gas stove-top. It’s beautiful and I feel very blessed!

This move called for a celebration since the house has been under construction for 3 years now, so we butchered 2 sheep and threw a staff party.

Here, rice and sheep stew gets dished up for almost 60 people.

For fun, we put Amanda’s (our daughter’s) old CD player on the veranda and popped in a CD of “Charamba”, a popular Zimbabwean-Christian singer who sings to upbeat, ethnic music. While we waited for everyone to arrive, some of our more demonstrative-in-dance staff (teacher, socorristas, office administrator) decided to practice a few local dance moves.

That had great appeal, and soon, different groups were being called up to show their moves as well.

This is the group of brick-layers. Peter (center) has been with us pretty much since day one when we moved here back in 1996. He’s built a few homes for us. Let’s hope this is the last!

The heads of departments dance

The “anyone who wants to” group, which meant, really, those who were least inhibited. They were pretty good.

Bero shows us a move only he can do!

I just knew we missionaries/volunteers would get called up to dance too, it was just a matter of time.
We did so bravely and not too badly either. Thankfully we had Simon to lead us while everyone clapped.

Dwight gave a short word of thanks for everyone’s hard work and participation with getting the building done. He also announced the name of the house, suggested by his dad, “Pumulani”, a Zulu word which means “rest”. This is the name Dwight’s parents gave their first family home in Transkei many years ago. It seemed very fitting to use it again.

And I guess that pretty much sums up the week. Last night, as we sat on our old veranda and rehashed the day’s events, we noticed that the ugly tree frog had found his way back onto the veranda and sat, perched, atop the dartboard, watching us. Almost defiant.

Yes, this is the same frog as the one at the beginning of this post. During the day he’s white and at night he goes dark. Like I said before, he’s a little freaky. Anyway, as he watched us and we watched him, we wondered what he’d do for a home when we move that dartboard to the new house. We felt kind of sorry for him so we decided that when the dartboard moves down, a stubborn tree frog will get moved down as well. Crazy, I know.

Let me close for now since there is still some moving/settling to do. On Monday we head for Mercy Air, South Africa, to do the Cessna's annual maintenance among other things that need to be done there.

Until then.


Karen said...

You did have a busy week. You must be thrilled for your new digs. Loved the photos as always.

Amanda said...

I laughed at the tree frog. Eww. Ugly thing. The other one is cute though :). Glad you guys were able to get moved into your house finally!!!

Anonymous said...

Congraulations - on your new home. Wow, I am so happy for you. Looks pretty cool to me. Blessings on you and your home - a place of rest, right?
Flat ground only when we were there.Impressive.

Patti said...

What some people won't do for their pets.....sheesh!!

Penny said...

What a busy week...and what a fun party. But I think the tree frog is cute too. :)

Russell said...

well, I think the tree frog is cute.

Ruth Trekofski said...

Awesome blog Lynn, such great pics. Wish we were there to celebrate with you ... mom