Friday, January 22, 2010

In Zambia

I am trying to type up this post now, while James went out to get phones and money exchanged.
When he returns we plan to go back out to an internet café to post this and check mail, etc.
Then we will have a full day of shopping, running errands and possibly trying to check out a house or two. We’ll see what we are able to get to.

We arrived safely, yesterday morning in Zambia, right on schedule at 6:30 AM. We left London at 6:30 PM. We were delighted to see that the plane was not full and there was extra room to spread out, but also that there was the “in flight” movie selections.

I had played up big that you can even watch movies on the plane to the children. When we flew to Africa on delta they had a huge selection of movies for kids, ones that they would be allowed to watch.
When we flew to London, they only had a few “kids” movies that ran at certain times. So I think the kids were disappointed because there was not even one that they could watch. So when we got on this plane and they could at least choose from about 4 different things whenever they wanted, they were especially glad. It is those little things that make a difference sometimes.
So they all enjoyed that.

They were able to get a little rest on the plane and when we landed the sun was shining and it was warm here in Lusaka. Very different, as when we took off from London, that very day we had been walking and driving through freshly falling snow!

Getting through the customs and collecting all the baggage, again went extremely well. Better than expected, and we know that too is an answer to prayer!

We were greet by Pastor Mbewe and Bruce and Vehlia Button. They are white south Africans that recently moved up here for Bruce to work and teach with the Soverign Grace Theological Seminary.

They later invited us over to dinner and have been very kind and gracious to us in welcoming us here as well. They have 4 daughters. Ages 11-18.

We loaded up all the luggage in 2 vehicles and then split up as well and came directly to the house that the Lord has provided us to use while we are looking for our own place to rent. That too was another blessing, to be able to get here quickly and start to settle in.

Pastor Mbewe took James to the grocery so he could buy water and some breakfast. The kids were all hungry and very thirsty as well. Right before they left, Caleb got a little bit sick to his stomach and just threw up a tiny bit. I honestly think it was due to activity and thirst rather than the stomach flu, as he has been fine immediately after and since that time. (praise the Lord!) He was in the very back of the vehicle and it was quite warm.

Thankfully James got home with water and very happily told us that he had found Special K Red Berries, Yogurt, milk, bread, and…Farfalle pasta! Also known as Bow tie pasta. Which is one of the kids favorite foods. With butter and parmesan. So he then found some parmesan and butter to go with it as well.

Later, in looking at the receipt he realized how much several of those items were. 2-3 times more than what we would pay at our stores, which we generally knew. But the cereal was 5 something a box! We rarely would buy cereal over 3 dollars a box, and liked to buy it around 2 something a box.
The parmesan for a small block of it, was $17. $17!
James said that he was so happy to find something he knew would make us happy and was under the influence of jet lag and not sleeping for a day. So, when we go back today, we will shop for the good prices. At any rate, whenever we cook that meal I know we will savor it and enjoy it!

We were able to buy a few small electric things in London, because we knew they were much cheaper and they use the same electrical outlets ( hair clippers and a hair dryer) We also managed to buy 4 pillows and a new duffle bag for pretty cheap and packed all that up to bring as well.

Jackson wanted me to let Ray and Ryle know that we are at Zambia!

So we spent the afternoon unpacking some things, rearranging things so all the books were in one place and all the medicines, put all the winter clothes and coats away in a suitcase together. And James and I were able to get a nap along with Jackson. The other kids didn’t take one, which was fine as they slept great last night!

We had a few not so good days of Jet lag in London and the kids still awake or waking up at midnight and 2 and 3 AM. One night the boys were hungry so we ate pop tarts we had brought from home, in the bed. Then the girls were still up at 1:30 AM and so they were eating some as well. (that treat didn’t last long. I usually bring a box when we travel, not because they travel well or are nutritious, but they seem to hit the right spot when you are hungry and worn out from traveling)

There is a woman named Alice that looks after the place here, and she was cooking rice and beans around lunchtime yesterday. We realized that she was cooking for us, and she asked if we were hungry.
We sat down to eat, and all enjoyed our first “Zambian meal” together of beans and rice.

Shortly after arriving here at the house, the boys and Emma were all finding bugs and snails and other creepy crawly things. They really enjoyed being outside yesterday and Emma was glad to be shoe-less walking around in the yard. The boys found their sandals and Sarah Cat her flip flops, which many people wear over here. We also found all the shorts for the boys and summery skirts for the girls and I. Most of the women wear skirts here.
Many of the homes have large “gardens” or yards as what we call them. So there is still plenty of room right now where we are for the kids to run and roam. The homes are all surrounded by very tall concrete walls. They typical employ someone else as well as a gardener and he opens the gate when cars drive up and honk the horn.

Since James went out this morning, the boys ran in a few minutes after to tell me that maybe Daddy is back, because they saw the gardener walking over to the gate. Well they soon realized he was not opening the gate but just doing some work by it. A little disappointed I think.

We went to the Buttons home last night for dinner. Vehlia cooked a lasagna which was very good, though would be different from the types of lasganas we make back home. We prayed together and then started serving the kids. Caleb got his plate and sat down. I went back to get another plate and came back to the table and Caleb had fallen asleep, with his head propped up on his hand right by his food. It was so cute, he was exhausted. We started to take him to the living room to get a nap on the couch but he woke up and decided to stick around and eat. After dinner Ian was sitting on the couch and he fell asleep a few minutes right there. We ate and then decided to leave pretty soon and get the kids home to bed.
Once we got everyone home and in the bed, someone came knocking on the door, and we had some visitors stop by. I said hello and the man introduced his wife and children to me and then I went to go get James. I said, “We have visitors and you should probably know who they are”, so it ends up it was one of the men that has been at the modules and lives here and was actually at the airport to help with the bags. Ndonji’s brother. We know Ndonji from the video of Zambia, that we have seen many many times over the course of the year. We just watched it again in London at the church in Crawley.

When we landed in Zambia, I looked at James and said, “To quote Rick Kelly, WELCOME…to Zambia!”
Which is what he says at the beginning of the video. Then Ian and james together said “Zambia is located in the heart of Southern Africa. Bordered by…” and they went on to quote a few lines of the video. SO Rick, we were think of you as we landed in Zambia, and we felt very welcomed!

Kasango Kayumbo offered to help in finding a place to live. Which was providential he had stopped by because at the Buttons we were just talking about having people here in the church help in getting things like that settled, since foreingers can so easily be assumed to have endless stores of money. He knows of a couple places for rent that he might take us to see tomorrow.

Then this morning James talked to Seke to see what we were looking for in a vehicle and a man from their church is in South Africa now and might be able to find a vehicle down there for us. It think that is his line of work. So we will see…

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