It has been a whirlwind last couple of weeks and throw in many days of no electricity, it is hard to get a blog out! We got electricity back after 6 days off, yesterday at 4:45 p.m. and at 6 p.m. it was turned off for load shedding! Then back on at 9 p.m. and off by 5:00 a.m. for more load shedding--saving 6 days of no electricity doesn't count! Then it was off from 5 a.m. Friday morning until 9 p.m. Friday night and off at 4 a.m. this morning because another fault! Yikes! Trying to find electricity and water at the same time to do laundry for 7 people have been my big challenge! On Thursday the 29th of January I went with Carolyn Mereki (Major's 17 y/o daughter) and her cousin Nancy (19 years old) to pack up and get ready for our move to our new townhouse, in Harare. We spent all day packing and sorting and throwing away a lot of 17 years of accumulation of stuff. Many visitors had left things they couldn't get into their suitcase at the last minute and we had quite a collection! On Friday the 30th Major arrived at the flat with 6 men from Chidamoyo and I ran off for an emergency Senior Nurse's meeting in Chinhoyi while they started the moving process. I got back about 4 p.m. and we rented a big lorry and started moving all the furniture and rest of things. We left with that big load at 6:30 p.m. and had cleaned out the flat! On the way to the new townhouse it started pouring so they had to stop to put a tarp on and we got there at 7:15 p.m. to no electricity! They hadn't hooked it up yet! Thankfully it stopped raining and they could unload without rain. So we sat with torches (flashlights) and directed what room to put things. Everyone was exhausted when I brought 8 pizzas at 9 p.m. for us to eat and go to bed. The beds were up and made and boxes and black garbage bags everywhere! We had no blinds as they have been ordered, but not ready yet, so we slept by the light of the moon! The next morning the girls and I went to work putting things away. We worked all day and got it in pretty good shape. Our builder brought 2 wires of electricity to put our fridge on until we get electricity, so that has helped us! It is still off as of today but he is "working on it!" On the 25th of January my forwarding agent, Sue Beckstead held a housewarming party for the new house in her home in CA and they have packed all the gifts to arrive with our next container--hopefully in May! We are so thankful to everyone who gave wonderful gifts. We use this house in Harare when we pick up and take visitors to the airport, for our supply runs and other missionaries use it when they need to be in Harare, so it is a house to be shared by many! We went back to the mission on Sunday the 1st of February and on the 5th I headed back to Harare again to pick up visitors on the 6th. I was able to put up some more pictures on the wall and clean up a bit more before they arrived! On the 6th our visitors, Bob and Rose Coibion from Roseville, CA and their grandchildren Brendan and Andrea Coibion (17 and 15 years old) from Santa Rosa, CA arrived. They were the official first guests to stay in the townhouse overnight and they loved it! After breakfast and some grocery shopping we left for home the next day, Saturday! Got home to no electricity and it never came on for 6 more days! Welcome to Zimbabwe! Major stayed in town to get 2 more visitors on Sunday, Megan and Jeff, med students from Ohio State University. They arrived on Sunday night and Rose had 2 big lasagna ready to welcome them and Major (his favorite!) Bob has come to remodel my kitchen. We had completely all of the rebuilding and he and Brendan went to work pulling up tiles, tearing out cabinets, and generally making a mess! We have dishes and food all over the house and each meal it is a treasure hunt to find something--especially dishes and glasses to set the table. Last night I said "we have brownies in a plastic bag somewhere, so you can have dessert, if you can find it! The kids went off and found them and then there was dessert! Pretty fun! The kitchen/dining room and other rooms will be in chaos for a couple of more weeks and we hope then it will be a beautiful, brand-new kitchen with more rooms and more cupboards! Can't wait! Until then treasurer hunt each meal! I have put Rose and Andrea to work in the office doing computer work and looking for lost ART treatment cards., and counting pills. Having no electricity it is a push when the generator comes on! They work flat off while they have a chance! They work on my Annual Report when they have no electricity. Always something to keep them well entertained! Jeff and Megan keep busy following Dr. Nura around and delivering babies, helping in theater and seeing lots of interesting things in clinic.
On 11-February we received 150 more layer chickens for our egg project. We sell out our eggs everyday so we decided to add more so we can sell more. They are adjusting well to their new home and should be laying in 2-3 weeks. We are thankful for Friends of Chidamoyo who financed this project.
Bob and Rose and the kids are off today for a week to do some touring of the country at Victoria Falls and Hwange. He has left the men here with work to keep them busy while he is gone! Then hopefully the new cabinets will be delivered the day they get back so they can get to work with the new things! We are having some rain on and off which keeps us a bit cool--down to 70's some day and up to 98 yesterday afternoon. Summer continues but everything is green and beautiful this time of the year!
Hanging pictures in new townhouse
Carolyn Mereki unpacking in kitchen
First dinner in house after moving--pizza!
Carolyn, Christine and Nancy unpacking in kitchen
Living room at the new townhouse
Rose and Bob with grandchildren Andrea and Brendan and Major eating breakfast
Rose and Andrea finding ART cards and doing computer work at hospital