Sunday, May 30, 2010

A Lesson

I just witnessed four baptisms here in Namwianga. The entire congregation of about 350 or more walked over to the bath houses outside the Hamby and Mann houses. There is a large tub there that they quickly filled for the baptisms. They were sweet and leading up to the event there was a group of students who were singing. Then after all four baptisms were complete one of the church leaders led the most perfect prayer I have ever heard after a baptism. He thanked God for touching their hearts and then in the best most forceful voice ever he asked God to protect these new Christians from the evil one. He asked for a protection to be all around them to help them resist and lead the life they knew they should lead. Why don’t we always pray that after a baptism? Isn’t that exactly what we think in our hearts but we don’t say it out loud to our Lord.

Lesson learned.

Thursday, May 27, 2010

The Moon at Victoria Falls

It is for real. There is a moonbow. It is not as full spectrum of color like one that is generated by sunlight. Every SLP knows that the "Rainbow Passage" says, "When the sunlight strikes raindrops in the air, they act as a prism and form a rainbow." Well, when enough full moon light strikes raindrops in the air, they also act as a prism.

My camera did not work well but we have a couple of good photographers with us and here is a link to one of the student's blog that has a good photo.

scroll down until you can see it.

The best part was that there were only about 5 other tourists there so we could stand and stare as long as we cared to!

God's handiwork is spectacular!

Monday, May 24, 2010

Reception = Full Meal

Who knew? When we were invited this morning to a welcome reception that would be a come and go thing, I assumed it was just a meet and greet, but no. In Zambia, the meet and greet is meet and eat and sing! They had the world's largest plastic tub of rice, grilled short ribs and chicken and Zambian relish and cake, lots and lots of cake. We all ate supper before we went because we thought it would just be visiting. So we are all reaching for the Pepcid and Tums because we had a 4th meal today!

The reception also included some speeches by the superintendent of the mission and an impromptu one by me, songs by their college boys singing group and one song by us and prayers. It was a very sweet and very special time. I have to say that yes, we did miss BMac and her song organizational skills along with the soprano voice, but Jaime and Ian can sing the melody with the best of them and the rest of us can belt out that alto line!

Today was also the first full day of the students working. It went beautifully. Caroline and Marja are jewels and are jumping in to provide legit supervision/teaching for the students.

I must end today with a comment about the roads here. Last year a company from China came in while we were here and plowed up, watered down, grated and graveled all roads. This year they are as bad a ever! No plowed roads but bumps and gulleys and hills and valleys are back! One section of the road is just like driving on a tin roof!

Still working on reducing those photos and surely I can figure it out soon!

Sunday, May 23, 2010

Talk About Legit Situations!

Why yes, it has been a year since I last wrote on this blog. Much has happened since then! I can’t possibly fill you in on all of it but as usual, my life is one wild ride!

[Let me say right now that the internet here only allows us to post photos that are low resolution and until I can figure out just what that means this will be a blog of words only. Sorry, I know it is boring.]

One of the craziest runs of this roller coaster is that Mike and Beth James have committed themselves to living in Greece for five years at the HUG program. They will be simply amazing and I am so happy that they can have this wonderful opportunity. Their decision leaves not only a large gap in our Easter festivities, but an empty office in the College of Communication. I decided to throw my name into the pile of those to be considered for the Dean’s position that Mike is leaving. Well, I was selected to be the new Dean. That run actually begins sometime in July since Mike and Beth don’t leave for Greece until the middle of July.

I had to pack my office before we left the states since the Pharmacy program has hired new faculty and they want their real estate back. So I packed boxes and packed bags for this summer jam packed with situations (as Lacey would call them!).

Our trip to Namwianga has been one filled with situations and laughter.

Situation 1. Delta wanted to charge us for our extra bag. That would be between $600-1000 for all 12 of us traveling to Zambia and my personal travel agent, Bill Spear, had assured me that we were ticketed all the way to Lusaka and that we were allowed two checked bags each! Situation remedied when they saw things through Bill’s eyes!

Situation 2. Three passengers were assigned to seat 22 A on the flight from Atlanta to DC. One was one of our party. We reserved our seats in February, thank you very much, and yes, indeed, we won. Situation remedied.

Situation 3. Evidently Delta was mad at us for each checking 2 bags and they were NOT able to charge us for them so they decided to shred one of mine. Yes, I did say shred. I could also say melt, mangle, claw, and allow the dragon they keep in the baggage handling area to breathe fire on that poor bag. The zipper had melted to some of the clothing inside. The wheels were chopped in half. The lower hard plastic portion was both shredded and melted and the top looked like the dragon had sharpened his claws on it. Even the lost/damaged luggage ladies said they had NEVER seen one as destroyed as that. They gave me a cheap replacement so that I could salvage the insides and continue on my journey and offered to send a check for the damages. We will see if they give me enough money to replace the cool Eddie Bauer bag they destroyed. Situation resolved.

Situation 4 The hotel that assured my personal travel agent, Bill Spear, that there would be shuttle to take the 12 of us with our 24 checked bags and numerous carry-ons and backpacks, lied to my personal travel agent, Bill Spear. They said to call them when we arrived. When we called they informed us that the shuttle stopped at 11 pm and our plane was scheduled to arrive at 11:30pm but did not arrive until after 12 am. So….do not stay at the Comfort Inn Dulles. They lie. We found 4 taxis and crammed in all our bags and arrived at the hotel about 1 am. Five hours of sleep and we were back at the airport!

Situation resolved.

Situation 5. 21 hours on a plane. At least it was not totally full and we could spread out a little. I think I slept a few hours. Landed in Addis Ababa a little late. Rushed to next flight but made it. Situation handled.

Situation 6. 12 persons arrived in Lusaka but only 17/24 bags arrived. They promised to send them to Livingstone. Situation delayed.

Situation 7. Bags are scheduled to arrive in Livingstone but we are 2 ½ hours away. Meagan H. is leaving Namwianga after being the mama to hundreds of babies for years and she is flying out of Livingstone. She takes our paperwork and the young man who drove her was able to return with the 7 lost bags. Situation resolved.

Let me say that these 11 people traveling with me are TROOPERS!!! Not a single complaint. Lots of laughter, lots of sharing of clothes and deodorant, lots of waiting, lots of prayers.

We are here safely and have many, many entertaining stories. I will hopefully post more and figure out how to post the photos.