Thursday, July 15, 2010

Winter is here!

Life continues on in Zimbabwe and it seems like it goes by so fast. We have been very busy at the hospital. It is winter and we see a lot of pneumonia, flu, and burns. Children stay near the fire in cookhouses to keep warm and frequently someone trips or a pan falls over with hot water or hot porridge and they get burnt.
The children seem to do well and the mother’s do the daily scrubbing of the burns and the kids are kept busy coloring and playing games with my visitors.
We had a new group of visitors that joined us on July 1, Pam and Jack Johnson from Bainbridge Island near Seattle and Hannah McCarty, my niece and friend Brandon from Ringwood, NJ.
Pam is an OB nurse and keeps busy with the medical things. Jack is building shelves, doing computer projects and keeping us organized and Brandon and Hannah have been helping in getting our ART meds ready, helping in our vaccination clinics and playing with kids in Pediatrics.
It is always fun to have visitors and see their enthusiasm for the work. It is always a big help in keeping us going!
It seems like the new visitors, Hannah and Brandon, have brought us good ZESA luck. We had electricity continuous from Friday night until Monday morning and then everyday since during the day some hours and the night some hours. I think we can’t let them go or the ZESA curse will return!
We have been able to purchase a lorry for the hospital (a 3.5 ton Mazda truck) which Major picked it up on Thursday and got back at 4 a.m. due to several flat tires! This will definitely help us in our building projects, transporting staff and supplies during our weekly grocery run and for church and youth work. Maybe our little trucks will not wear out so fast! The hospital was able to purchase this with funds from selling our crops that we got from bartering for our services last year! Now the only problem is when we say go get “Lori” for a C/Section they will go and get the truck!
Winter is here and we have had weather down to 52 (10 C) this week, brrr! It may not sound cold to you but our houses are built for heat and so my dining room which is a screened in room can be very cool eating breakfast and seeing your breath in the air! It takes until about 10 a.m. to warm up (I can go from 4 layers to 2) and then by 6 p.m. when the sun goes down it is cold again! We look forward to August when it warms up again.
This last week we attended a funeral for our fellow missionary, Ivan Martin, who died after a 2 year struggle with cancer. The service was in Bulawayo (11 hours from here) and it was really a great service celebrating his wonderful life. All of us can only hope that such nice things can be said about us and the influence of our work here when we die. His body will be flown to the US at the end of the month for a service there and burial in the family cemetery in rural Colorado. JoAnn, his wife of 53 years will return to keep the work going on with the churches in Bulawayo. Pray for this upcoming travel and for JoAnn and the family.
We had a party on Friday night to celebrate our long service awards for people who have worked 5-10-15-20 and 25 years for the hospital. We had 35 for dinner and served 1 pig, 25 pounds of rice, 10 pounds of potatoes, 4 heads of cabbage made into cole slaw, gravy and 3 cakes! Everyone enjoyed and we appreciate all of our workers.
We continue to see more Obama clothing line—this week it was belt buckle worn by our Rehab Tech. I guess he needs to supplement his income somehow and Zimbabwe seems to be the place!

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