Monday, December 8, 2008

In Zim

here is a 2 day diary so far.....


Sunday night in Zimbabwe:

HI all. I am somewhat speechless. It is Sunday evening here. I am in a private park 3 hours from Harare, so I have not seen any children yet. This is my surprise. Tomorrow, I will walk with a lion and I will ride horseback. Pam, please tell Moreau not to be jealous. This is a resort/retreat for Christians. it is beautiful. I will take photos. i have already seen Elephants walking the grounds. This morning I woke in the voluteer camp. I will have a room in like a little house. It is not what I expected, at all.

My hosts are Nic, Susanne and Linda. They are all from Johannesburgh, South Africa. They are wonderful.

My flights were good. My luggage is lost. I might or might not get it back.....so the children might or might not get their pencils and paper. i want them to have their stuff. I will be fine either way.

So, i'm on a timer....and i won't be able to use computer again for a few days. The ride in a van to this place, 3 hours, the most remarkable. If i see nothing else, i have seen so much. Babboons, a family of 4, crossed the street. One was a tiny baby. The human mommas' wear their babies on their backs, and tie them on with fabric. The babies look so content. The mommas carry things on their heads, perfectly. they farm. Some just hang on the side of the road and try to sell you things. they don't have a good marketing plan.....because i don't know what they are selling.

They drive on the wrong side of the road and in the wrong side of the car. no speed limit. fast...fast. food is weird, but i am doing okay with it.

no tv. i love it.

i had a good cry the first night, missing my boys. still miss them so much it hurts.

i'll be here for 1 more full day, (2 nights) and then will go to the orphanages. my heart is not quite ready for that, but will be.

i met incredibly wonderful people on the planes. maybe the nicest people in the world. a man from Dakar was my buddy for 7 hours. a beautiful lady from zimbabwe was my buddy in line (in queue) at the airport for 2 hours while we reported our luggage missing. she was so lovely. she gave me a huge hug for coming to her country. i could cry right now, but will try not to in this tiny internet cafe, in a beautiful park, in zimbabwe.

dinner is soon. must eat and rest up for my walk with a lion tomorrow. my room has a straw roof. i'm listening to christian music in the background right now.... "we bow down, we lay our crown, at the feet of Jesus...and we cry holy holy holy is the lamb".

i am safe and well, and i love you each.

always and for the Lord,

melissa





Monday - Zim time: 2:56 pm
the lion walk is later this afternoon. this morning was the horseback ride into the brush to look for wild game. i had no idea i'd be doing any of this. i couldn't possibly tell you as much about zimbabwe as i'd like. this computer is slow. people are starving in this country. their currency is worthless, but it is against the law to trade in other currency that requires a permit. i can use my us dollars, but many others cannot. if you think this doesn't make sense, then you might begin to understand how helpless they feel. for example, the guides here are paid in zim dollars but the banks don't have cash....so it is like they are working for free. it is so bizarre. i have been told not to use a credit card here even for an emergency because the exchange rate here for credit cards is ancient, and that a $3 bar of soap here would charge $300 to my card. it's a good thing i brought cash.

on to funnier trivia...

the bugs here are large enough to be pets. there is a beetle that is larger than a large egg. it is not pleasant. he's frightening in fact.

i have flea bites. come'on, that's funny.

the birdlife here is incredible. they sing so loud and they are so beautiful.

this park here is called antelope park. the wildlife here include elephants, zebra, giraffe, wildebeasts, impala, elephants and lions. the lions are being breeded and/or rehabilitated to go back into the wild, so they get special attention. the other animals are self-sustaining, but they are used to humans. on my horse ride this morning, i got to see zebra, giraffe, impala. later today, i went to watch my friends swim with the elephants. i didn't participate since i do not have clean dry clothes to change into. the i got to pet them though, and they are remarkble.

a bug woke me up in the night. he sounded like a squeaking cell phone...so this was confusing. i slept under mosquito netting in my small private room. i slept well, except for the bug.

the showers and bathrooms are in a separate building. i have only taken one shower since i arrived, but i have not yet washed my hair. i'm afraid, that without my hair product (in lost luggage) that i might be laughed at alot with hair sticking straight up. i honestly don't know when i'll get to wash my hair. trust me....it is more acceptable here than it would ever be at home.

tomorrow morning we will drive back to harare. the plan is to visit all 4 orphanges beginning tomorrow and then choose a project. i'm getting nervous about this. i have been learning about the culture and the government. zimbabwe is extremely poor. it makes me feel a little guilty about being at this "resort" but i am happy to have had this experience. i have a feeling though that when i leave come back home, it is the resort that i will remember the least. they offered me a trip to victoria falls at the end of this...which i declined because i'd rather see my children. but to do my orientation to the country, they had to take me somewhere, which is how we ended up here.

need i say this....i really miss my children

it is easy to talk to God here, especially when you feel the need to pray at night that bugs won't be in bed.....on my knees is a natural posture....HA!!!

i might get to post again tonight....but if not....the next time i'm here my stories will be about the children

2 comments:

fallengirl said...

So glad you are able to keep us up to date. You will be so proud of your little man. Last night while doing our craft he was telling all of his friends what his mommy was doing. "She is gone to Africa to teach little boys and girls that don't have mommies and daddies and are very sick." Wow, just listening to him tell the story and hear the excitement in his voice brought tears to my eyes. We had a special prayer for you last night.

Sarah said...

Wow. Thanks for taking time to post the update. I was on the edge of my seat and can't wait to hear about the children at the orphanage. I will be praying for your safe travel.