Wednesday, March 30, 2011

Rasta's Beadwork

Here is a link to an interesting article about a Livingstone craftsman. Makes me wish I could do a little shopping African style!

Tuesday, March 29, 2011

Reunion with Oldenburgs

On Monday we spent some wonderful hours with our former coworkers Don and Laura Oldenburg. Don and Laura were with us at Namwianga from 2006 - 2009 and became dear friends as we shared many experiences of mission work together. The Oldenburgs moved to Michigan after their time at Namwianga, and we hadn't seen them since July, 2009. We managed to connect with them in Poplar Bluff, Missouri, where they met us while on a trip to visit relatives in Tennessee.

I realized as we talked about people and situations and memories of our time at Namwianga that no one but Don and Laura can relate to some of the things we did, and they can laugh with us at the absurdities of bush life. It's certainly true that in some cases, you really have to be there. What a joy it was to reconnect with them and to share that special bond in the Lord.

Monday, March 21, 2011

Sponsored Student

I'm still very involved in the US Sponsorship Program at Namwianga. This week I've been writing up bios of the new grade 10 sponsored students. I haven't met many of them, but I do know a few from interviews I conducted last October. Gift Kabali is one that I remember well because he was so impressive.

I interviewed Gift Kabali at Sinde Basic School last October. I knew immediately he was the kind of person that the sponsorship program is designed to help. Both of his parents died in 2006, and since then he has lived with his grandmother at Sinde. She is also raising his brother and sister and some other orphans.

Gift had one of the highest qualifying scores I've ever seen -- he scored more than 100 points above the minimum cutoff point on the high school entrance exam. He is also a leader and last year was the Headboy at his school, the highest leadership position available.

Helping students like Gift is what the sponsorship program is all about. I'm glad I can be a part of it.

Sunday, March 13, 2011

Grandmommy Longlegs

This is a guest blog from Roy Merritt at Namwianga (with my comments at the end).

As our rainy season drips to its end, insects are preparing for the long dry.

We have had our wettest season in years. After the last storm, our dam’s main spillway flooded and water flowed over our emergency spillway for the first time. Even that wasn’t enough relief, and water eventually lapped over the top of the main dam wall. It’s an earth dam, so we are grateful it wasn’t damaged.

These two ladies are hatching little ones who will protect us from assorted bugs till rains come back.

Gibson (one of the boys at Eric's House) found this one for me, a granny wearing black with yellow polka dots. I have shown her life-size here, her abdomen about the size of an egg yolk.
I’ve never seen one like this before. If anyone out there knows what kind this is, please tell me.

This is a female grandaddy longlegs hauling an egg basket, busy hatching scrawny little newcomers.

Linda here: Seeing these pictures brings back lots of memories for me. When we took down the things off our walls last March as we got ready to move, we found the remnants of spider nests on almost every single item! No wonder we had eight-legged critters everywhere!

We had been told that the wall spiders were harmless and actually helpful--supposedly they eat the mosquitoes. However, after five years of co-existing with the wall spiders, I had to admit I had never seen a spider eat a mosquito and it seemed that we had plenty of mosquitoes to go around anyway. We still advised our guests to leave the spiders alone as long as they were on the walls, but any critters who dared hit the floor were fair game for a smashing.

I personally think live and let live has its limits when it comes to spiders (but don't tell Roy!).

Wednesday, March 02, 2011

Gregersenblog: Zamgenuity

A re-post from the 2006 archives.
Gregersenblog: Zamgenuity: "A post from David this time. Zamgenuity-- A term describing the creative ways Zambians accomplish their everyday tasks without the resourc..."