Thursday, August 16, 2007

meeting the neighbors

This last week and a half has been filled with lots of car rides, meetings and checking to make sure that our house is being worked on so we can move in soon.

We are settling into our new church here, Kampala International Church. Quite a cross section of the Nations represented as well as denominations. It is very international not only in nationalities but also beliefs, but we all worship the same God and it works out great.

The family went to Jesse's open house for newcomers at his new school and got to meet the staff, tour the facilities and meet other new families and students. As I had told you before they have 54+ different countries represented so it is a very exciting place to be a part of. School started on Wed., but Jesse will have to start late as the funds for his tuition have not yet come in. We are believing that will happen soon so he can get settled in there.

Makinzi, Kaci and I went into town to play with the orphaned babies while David and Jesse explored a nearby island last week. The babies home we went to has 44 orphaned or abandoned children from new born to 4 years old with the majority of the kids being around 5 months to 3 years old. We had so much fun that we have been back twice. They assigned us to the newborn to 6 month olds and Makinzi was in heaven. ( for those who don't know her she loves to hold the little ones)We were there for their afternoon feedings ( Kaci enjoyed the ones who spit up on her), diaper changes and play time. The first time we were there they had just gotten two new babies in, one that was prematurely born at about 3 pounds and another one that his mother had burned him. He is about 2 months old. His head, hands, face and side were all burned and wrapped in gauze. Both very cute, but so sad to see such little ones struggling. We came back two days later and they were both doing really well.

The guys decided to explore an island in Lake Victoria that we can see from our back yard. They walked to the fishing village that is close to our house and hopped a ride on a wooden handmade boat with a 5 HP motor. It took them about 20 minutes to get there. From what they could tell, not too many white people had been to the island before. The people were mostly fisherman living a very meager lifestyle. You can see from the pictures that I posted. They ate some local food, flat bread with vinegar fish. YUM! The people were very friendly and showed them a good time.

We poked around the village that we will be living in to check out all of the people and places of interest. We were greeted by kids that live next to us. I have posted a picture of them as well. Very nice village, not spoiled by the outside like some of the villages. All of the kids wanted me to take their "snaps" and loved looking at them on the digital screen of my camera after I had taken the pictures.

Today we ended the day by going and exploring the area where our temporary house is. It's amazing how you can walk such a short distance and you are in the middle of extreme poverty. We walked over a swamp and then onto a railroad track that all of the locals use as their roadway. We took our Lab Maggie with us. All of the people are afraid of her, but the kids were very interested in seeing her...from a distance. So we came across a church that 20 kids were playing a make shift soccer game and we stopped to watch them. They wanted to see our dog, but were too afraid to come over. So, we threw a corn cob for her to retrieve and they were so excited. In about 3 minutes we had 50 kids all around watching her retrieve the corn cob and catch it in the air in her mouth. We stayed and played for about 15 minutes until rain clouds came and we decided we better head back before we were caught in a downpour. On the way back we ran into some little girls that wanted to talk to us. 3 of them spoke very good English so we stopped. There were 2 family sets each one with 5 girls. The one set had three of the daughters represented, Patience 3, Fina 5 and Gloria 7. All so cute and very happy. At the end of the conversation (Patience entertaining us the entire time) I told them that we needed to go home and make dinner. I asked them what they were having for dinner and they responded with Porsho (corn meal mash) and beans. I asked them if they ate rice and their eyes lit up as they told me that they only eat rice at Christmas. They went on to tell me with a gleam in their eyes how only on Christmas day do they get to eat rice and they eat meat too. You could see it in their eyes how much they looked forward to that day because it was so special to them to be able to eat rice and meat. Can you imagine? We are so blessed and most of us don't even know it!

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