Monthly Archives: August 2006
I have many pictures I took this summer that need to be gone through, cataloged, and written about. I have started that process. While in Boot Camp in Florida, I took many pictures of my kids running the obstacle course. As the OC is run in the pre-dawn hour, most of the pictures turned out very very dark. I was going to just delete them all, but Photo Suite has an “enhance” button, which I thought I would try! Sooooo, with the click of a single “button”, I went from this:
And because it thrilled Kellie Rock so much (tongue in cheek) to google herself (see comment #6), I’ll give her credit on this picture, too. Just in case she decides to google herself again. Soooo, this is Kellie Rock jumping for the rope at the Slough of Despond. Miss the rope, and in the water (gross sulfur water) you go. I can’t remember if she made it on this attempt or not, so let’s just say she did! Way to go, Kellie!
A friend told me about this Round Robin Photo Challenge. This is my first entry. And I am miserably late in posting for the “Transportation” challenge and am simply hoping that I’ll be allowed to play! This photo is neither technically well shot, nor did I take it myself. I’m not sure if that’s one of the rules. However, since it is by far one of the more interesting modes of transportation I have employed, here you go! AND, because “ride an elephant” is on my List of Fifty, it does double duty. Perhaps the List of Fifty aspect of it will make it that much more interesting in the Round Robin Challenge???
I was in Zambia, Africa, with Teen Missions, International. Our three teams of teenagers had just wrapped up our five weeks of work and evangelism projects and were working our way towards home. One of the stops took us to the Protea Hotel outside of Lusaka for a wonderful continental breakfast (a REAL continental breakfast, not the HoJo and Holiday Inn variety with a hard roll and funky O.J.). After breakfast we all piled into our trucks to take a safari, sort of. The safari was a truck ride through a small preserve. There were many different species of birds and fascinating antelope, but only three zebra, two caged but very ferocious lions, and this elephant. Her name is Ellie. We were told that if she was feeling calm that day, that some of us might be allowed to ride. “Ride an Elephant” has been on my “to do” list since I was a teenager. There were over 70 people in our group. The chance that I’d have been picked to be one of the nine riders was, well, remote. But LOOK! My team picked me to go up! Ellie stood next to one of the trucks which was used as a mounting apparatus. The first two groups of three easily climbed aboard and dismounted after a short sit on top. My group climbed up and settled onto her very mountainous spine. It was then she chose to decide that she’d had enough of us, and she took off walking! Mind you, this elephant is just loose. She’s got a keeper of sorts who was feeding her treats to encourage behavior, but she moved away from the truck and took off for a short walk because she wanted to. No matter what the keeper did, he couldn’t persuade her to move back to the truck. That’s when this picture of me making my “what to do” shrug was taken. How to get down????
After a few moments and quite some distance from the truck, the keeper got Ellie to sit. Once she was down I helped “my two kids” off her back and slid off myself. It was rather exhilarating, to be up top a wild animal who really was only letting us up there out of the generosity of her spirit! I felt like she’d given me a real gift. Could I have said I “rode an elephant” if all I did was sit there? I don’t think so! But, since Ellie decided to take a little walk about, I could! So, that’s my story of the sort of safari! If you want to see what else I did on the safari, click here.
No charge for directory assistance
Phone companies are charging us $1.00 or more for 411 / information calls
when they don’t have to.
When you need to use the 411 / information option!
Simply dial 1-800-FREE-411 or 1 800 373-3411 without incurring a charge.
Works on home phones and cell phones.
I was so blessed this summer to have been the regular recipient of mail from family and friends. I tried to respond to as many people as I could, but wasn’t able to get a letter off to each person that wrote while I was gone. Soooo, I will shamelessly use my blog to impersonally personally thank all of those who took the time to write to me. A most special thanks to John who was a letter writing machine, and to my mother who wrote many letters as well. And to Ruth, who even though she doesn’t really know me, wrote to me every single week. Thanks also to my Dad, Diane, Whitney, Phil, Little Richie, Alaska, Jonathan, and Avie (lots of cards!), Lizzie, Joanne and Scott, Doris, Uncle Jim, Aunt Lynne, Aunt Leslie, cousin Julie, Peter, Shawn, Julie, Diba, the Broscos, Lorraine, Andre’a, Joanne H. (my other Mom), Brandy, Kate, Diana, Stephanie, and Brenda. I think that’s everyone. If your name isn’t here, there are two possible scenarios: 1) I forgot you wrote to me, or 2) Your letter never arrived. If you are smart, and most of my friends and readers are, you will claim that you wrote to me and that I never received all the letters you faithfully sent!
Even though by the time the letters are received in a place like the bush in Zambia, the “news” is sometimes weeks old, it’s like a refreshing drink of cool water to hear from family and friends when you are in the middle of nowhere. Our mail went out only whenever we saw Robert from the base. He’d visit us occasionally at the closer rescue units, and he’d also come weekly to drive us to our next location. We’d only receive mail as often as we’d see him as well. So, mail days were often like Christmas for me with a large pile of letters to be read when I had a quiet moment. This was generally after lights out, or if I was ahead of schedule making lunch or dinner.
Above is a particularly fun reverse of an envelope from Andre’a showing Colorado and Africa and a particularly exhausted postman. It also bears the two Zambian cancellation stamps that all letters arrived bearing: one from Ndola, and one from Lusaka. This particular letter was postmarked out of Loveland on July 26th, and postmarked into Lusaka and Ndola on August 8th. That was about the average amount of time letters took to get to Zambia. Depending on when the mail got to us, you could add up to a week on top of that.
Soooooo, thanks again, all of you, for taking the time to enrich my summer.
Today when I dressed I put on a pair of pants that I’d worn in Africa. One of those pairs that has all the pockets, velcro, and zippers. This pair is blue and maroon. I shoved my hands in my pockets to smooth them down, and felt dirt at the bottom of them. African dirt. I keep finding Africa in my pockets, in the creases and corners of things, and (in the case of at least one pitiful mosquito) smashed between papers that spent the summer with me in Zambia.
Africa is on my mind.
Click this link for a story on a boy in Zambia named Alone. I found this link posted on Shirtly Buxton’s (see Blogroll for link to her site) posting dated August 24th. My thoughts on Africa, orphans, AIDS, poverty, and the like are myriad. For now, this story on Alone will stand alone…
I had a really huge stack of mail to go through when I got home. Finally started to get to that stack yesterday. As part of that gruesome project is the less gruesome project of looking through all my catalogues. I love catalogues and catalogue shopping. In one of the catalogues, I came across a plaque (which I’d never purchase, but…) it held a quote of Emerson’s that made me think of faith:
Do not go where the path may lead
Go instead where there is no path and leave a trail.
It only stood to reason that if I was Mama Lou, that my male counterpart, Abner, would eventually become “Daddy Abner”. I even called him that. Only 24, it was a bit incongruous that he was called Daddy by all those kids nearly his age, and by one woman old enough to be his mother, but it seemed to fit. He took prodigious care of his children, and his Mama.
Before I left for Boot Camp, one of the things I prayed for and had everyone I could think of who prayed pray for, was that I would get an excellent head male leader to work with. When I first met Abner, I couldn’t believe my eyes. Before me stood a buzz haircutted adorable KID who looked no more capable than I felt!
But then he started talking, and I was amazed. Though he was born in the Philippines in the year I was there on my SECOND Teen Missions team, he was by far one of the most adult young adults I’d ever met. We had instant rapport and started to laugh and never really stopped all summer.
“Daddy” Abner in my favorite kitchen…the tiki hut kitchen in Kansoka. Looking for beef jerky probably! Shows us all just how hard a worker he is.
Abner was (well IS) on staff with Teen Missions. This was not his first time as head leader. As I mentioned in an earlier post, Drum For Sale, Abner was well-versed in the art of the deal. He also was like a real-life MacGyver. He could fix anything, make anything, and solve any problem. He wears designer clothes in the middle of Africa, always looks clean and smells wonderful, and has 5,482 really good things you can do with a caribiner. On our field banquet night (story and photos in a later posting) he whipped up a grill and a BBQ pit. “How do you know how to do all this stuff?” was the question. The answer kind of broke my heart…”that’s what poverty teaches you.”
One day I was lamenting about my lack of light in the mornings. Our kerosene lanterns had both broken. So that day, he made a kerosene lantern for me out of (MacGyver would have been proud) a ketchup (tomato sauce in Zambia) bottle, a bit of aluminum foil, and some medical gauze. That lantern (and subsequent others) lasted all summer.
And he loves Jesus like pretty much no one I’ve ever met. He’s fierce and strong and not afraid to wear pink. He knows just about every song ever written, and doesn’t seem to be fear anything. He’s a real one of a kind.
It was probably a combination of knowing that I was just where God wanted me to be, and of being really well taken care of for the first time in my adult life that made me feel more safe than I have ever felt in my entire life. And THAT in the middle of Africa. Talk about your miracles!
Abner did not come back “home home” after our summer. He went on to his “home” in Mozambique to work and teach at the BMW Bible School at the Teen Missions base there.
Thanks for being part of my amazing summer, Daddy Abner! Let’s do it again next year!
Who says you can’t say it with knives as well as with flowers???
Your “mudder” misses you!! Make good choices!
It makes a gorgeous sound. It was bartered for with a ferocity I am sure was unknown in Zambia, nay, AFRICA, until that day!
I had been looking for a drum to bring home from Africa. I wanted a musician’s drum. One that was made to be played. All I came across were “tourist quality” drums. They sounded okay, but lacked the rich, resounding tones of a REAL drum. They were painted with cliche and naive designs. Not something that a real Zambian would play in church or anywhere else. We had not had much chance to look for souvenirs, and I had pretty much given up the notion of finding the drum I sought.
Until…there it was! On the side of the road. Tall and slender and the color of honey. The skin on the top worn and bearing the grime of many hands. This was a drummer’s drum. It sat next to a slightly less tall and somewhat more round “tourist quality” drum. I made a bee line to this honey drum and asked the price. “Eighty thousand kwatcha” was the reply. In bartering language, that means that at least half the price should be the final price. I started there, fully willing to pay 60,000 in the end as I REALLY WANTED this drum. “Forty thousand”, I countered. “Eighty.” I laughed. I jokingly instructed him on “how to barter”. He laughed, too, and said “Okay, for you, 75,000.” At this point, Ryeon (the mad Korean bartering crazy boy on my team who had his arms tightly filled with all manner of local souvenirs already obtained) entered the picture. “How much for that drum?” he queried, pointing to the other large drum. “Eighty thousand”. They bartered for a moment, and Ryeon took out 45,000 kwatcha and said “I’m giving you 45,000 for it, and that’s all”. And he was handed the drum and off he took! So, with THAT, I returned to MY bartering. I again offered sixty. And was again rejected. “Seventy five thousand.” I pointed out that the other drum, which I conceded was not as good a drum, was given for 45,000, I wondered what the logic was of holding out for a much higher sale on the drum I wanted. He just looked at me and shrugged and said, “Seventy five thousand.” Soooooooo, I decided to call his obvious bluff and said, “well that’s just too much” and walked away. Generally this results in the seller following you and coming to some sort of deal with the prospective buyer. As I got further away, my heart sank.
He was not following me! He had no intention of trying to sell that drum to me. And I desperately wanted that drum. But how did I go back and still try to make a deal???? How????
I put my very best “pretty please help the poor pathetic female” look on my face and approached Abner.
Abner is a filipino. Well versed in barter management and the art of the roadside deal. He had already gone before us in many areas and warned the vendors that if they tried to take advantage of these american kids, that not a kwatcha would they be receiving from them! Abner agreed to accept the challenge of acquiring that drum for me. I gave him 75,000 kwatcha and told him not to come back without that drum, even if it meant paying the actual asking price!
Abner was gone for a lonnnnnng time. I started to worry about him since his head inury had just occured the night before. (Watch for “Abner Loses His Mind” to be posted in the very near future!) I started to wonder if he didn’t forget where he was and wander off. He ended up being gone over an hour! And I cheered when I saw him coming down the road with MY DRUM slung up on his shoulder! Yay! Success!
And he was laughing as he approached me. He was laughing so hard that I started to laugh. I wasn’t sure exactly why I was laughing, but when Abner laughs, you laugh! (You can’t help it.) And then he got down to telling me the story. As he approached he saw that the previous seller had been replaced by a woman. And he thought he had things well in hand. As he is a very handsome and charming man, he didn’t think that getting the drum for 40,000 was going to be a problem….”Seventy five thousand”. That’s what she kept saying. Just like the other guy! What’s the deal about that drum????
Abner accepted the challenge, and although it took him an hour, he finally got that drum for me for 46,550 kwatcha, a nearly dry ball point pen (a pen, it turns out, that he’d “stolen” from me!), a freebie Citibank calculator, and a handful of balloons he had in his pocket! Strong work!
I managed to get this very lovely and very heavy drum home in my duffel protected by layers of chitenges. I think it’s just about my favorite thing I’ve ever picked up on my travels!
Ever think about water? I mean really think about water? When I was little, probably 7 or 8, it dawned on me that the earth’s water was the same water now as it was when the earth was created. No more, no less. I used to wonder where MY water had been before over the ages? I think I was in second grade when I wrote a story about a single drop of water and its life.
Think about the water that’s in that glass. Who drank that water before? Whose sweat was it in the past? (A gross thought). How deep was the deepest it had ever been in the ocean? How high had it been in the atmosphere? Was this the first time I had met each of these molecules? Had I met any of them before? How far away did any of those molecules get that I’d met before I met them again??? All those molecules that all traveled around the globe independently now coalesced into one glass in my hand! What was the collective tale that this glass of water could tell????? And all you have to do to trigger these reflections is turn on the tap. Well, here where I live that’s all you have to do.
In many other parts of the world, water is something that is come by somewhat differently. Let’s talk about the water where I was in Africa, shall we? Out in the bush, there’s no indoor plumbing. Water is obtained from rivers and wells. It’s amazing how your whole approach to something, like water appreciation, changes based on whatever set of circumstances you might find yourself in. (Note: If you’ve never read Dune, you should. It has a fascinating way to deal with water as a precious commodity. And, if you’ve never seen the critically panned but i think awesome movie, Water World, you should. Soil is what is precious in it. Take the easily accessible and ubiquitous and make it something more precious and hard to come by, and your whole thinking changes.) Water.
We were pretty lucky at most of the five locations we stayed in this summer in Africa. Those five places were as follows: the TMI base in Ndola, and (in the bush) the rescue units in Chiwala, Lupya, Lufwanyama, and Kansoka. The TMI base actually was hooked up to the city water system, and the water was drinkable, right from the tap. IF there was any water coming through the pipes when you turned the tap on, that is. The water was most plentiful at night, when the city was largely asleep. During the day, if you needed water, you might not get any. So planning ahead was a really good idea….collect water at night for use during the day.
Chiwala had a very nice pump. And the pump was close, within 100 yards of our camp. But the water was red. Full of dirt. We’d brought a filter from the states that was supposed to turn ANY water, regardless of its condition, into potable water. I didn’t believe it. We’d run five gallons of this red water through the filter and the water would start to come out pink on the other end.
Yup. That’s been filtered once.
If dirt was getting through that filter, then so were bacteria and viruses. Stuff that could cause dysentery, cholera, yellow fever, and the like. But it was a good deep well, so none of that stuff was probably in there. Still, it made me nervous. But we enjoyed the plentiful nature of the water in Chiwala. Which was a good thing. It takes a lot of water to keep nearly 30 people with enough water to drink and cook with, let alone with which to do laundry and to bathe.
On to Lupya. We had two sources for water there. There was a shallow open well (looked like a small lake of green water) about a tenth of a mile from camp that held ice cold water we could use for bathing and laundry, but it was completely unsuitable for drinking. The second source was a government pump, fully two miles from camp. Each day, sometimes twice a day, half of the team would put an empty five gallon bucket on their head, and bring it back full (yes, on their heads).
Front to back that’s Kellie Rock, Jessica Cartwright, Hannah Oliver, and Rebecca Shang
That water was much cleaner looking than the red water of Chiwala. But it was still full of dirt and sediment that was gray. The filter died. Blew it’s housing. Which was fine with me. I had really wanted to boil water from the very beginning anyway. We strained the water through layers of gauze and then boiled it over one of the braziers. To boil it, the fire had to be very hot. It takes a good amount of time, and a good amount of charcoal to get 5 gallons of water to a full and rolling boil. AND it has to boil for 15 minutes. Once it had boiled, if time and availability of pots permitted, we’d set the pot aside (and put a new pot on) to cool. Once it had stopped boiling, the dirt could settle to the bottom. Then we’d pour off the good water into the big yellow and red Igloo. I also had two large buckets of kitchen water which needed to be kept full. Since the Igloo kept all that water nice and hot as designed, everyone tried to remember to fill their canteens at bedtime so that they’d have nice cold water to drink in the morning. If they forgot, it was hot water for them until the Igloo cooled, which it never really did.
Our third location was Lufwanyama. “Lufy” had a gorgeous deep well that a Teen Missions team had dug a few years prior. The water that came out of that well was probably drinkable as is, but we boiled it anyway, to be on the safe side. This well was open to the entire community to use.
That’s me pulling water out of the very deep well in Lufwanyama
I imagine that once that well was put in that water borne illnesses were reduced significantly. The road to the well meandered past “my kitchen”, so there were endless smiles and greetings for me throughout the day. And the well was close, so no more four mile round trips to get water.
Our final rescue unit was located at Kansoka. Kansoka, like Lupya, had two water sources. Another deep well, and a river. The well water was used for drinking/cooking, and the river water for bathing and laundry. Prior to the digging of the well by last year’s Teen Missions team, the river was the only water source. No matter how clean river water looks, you have to just imagine how dirty it is. (Think about all the people upstream using it for all sorts of purposes!) And gastrointestinal sickness was common. Once the well was dug, the sickness stopped.
As you previously read, I took a bath once a week. One of the reasons for that was the difficulty of getting water, and the coldness of the water. It was just too much of a pain to bother. And bathing in nearly ice cold water is, well, not relaxing! The whole process of water acquisition and bathing preparation was too labor intensive to bother with until absolutely necessary. Even laundry (except for kitchen linens) was something that was done rarely. It almost seemed pointless when the wash water was black after just a few items, and the rinse water only slightly less black. I went for getting the stink out and leaving the stain, but was always amazed at just how much dirt a few articles of clothing can hold. Thursdays were “Sheema Days” for us. At each of the rescue units, once a week, we’d eat “African Style”. Because making food on Sheema Days was so much less labor intensive, Thursdays became my bath and sometimes laundry day. You might find it humorous to note that you can pretty much tell what location we are at by what I am wearing. In Lufwanyama it was this blue shirt, and blue and green chitenge with yellow polka dotted pajama pants underneath!
The bucket on the left is clothes needing to be washed, the one in the middle is wash water, the one on the right is rinse water. Well, the clothes SMELLED clean when I was done!
(Note: When we arrived in London for a two night’s stay before returning to the U.S., we stayed in a sparse, but clean hotel. “Are the rooms en suite?” I asked when I checked us all in? THEY WERE! A bathroom in every room! I drew myself a nice hot bath as soon as I could and sank into the water. And I started to scrub. It wasn’t until my third bath and scrub that the ring of dirt in the bathtub mostly disappeared. I probably should have taken a fourth bath to really be clean, but I was getting pruny. And besides, there was the next day and the tub and the water would still be there.)
I am home now. If I want water, I turn on a tap, and there it is. If I want it hot, all I do is move a handle or adjust a knob. Two weeks ago I didn’t even use water to brush my teeth. Today, I let the water run and disappear down the drain while I brushed…Two weeks ago I didn’t start to feel dirty (even though I was covered in charcoal dust and smelled like frying onions) for about five days. I have taken a shower every single day since I’ve been home. Today every load of laundry I did I ran through the rinse cycle twice, to make sure it was good and rinsed, even though none of that laundry I did would have even qualified as dirty two weeks ago.
For the past 48 hours I have had nothing but internet connectivity issues. I have written and rewritten and rewritten the post I intended for today, but have lost my changes time and time again. I am just a little bit frustrated with the whole thing! I have now resorted to using a dial-up connection and it’s so incredibly slow that I can’t upload the pictures I want to use and soooooo, I have decided to simply write a couple of thoughts and sign off. How did I ever DO the dial-up thing for so long????
It was probably inevitable, but our solar system has gotten smaller. One planet smaller. Sorry Pluto. You’re out. I guess the school text book companies are salivating. New editions must be printed and sold!!!! The Earth is round!
In a related story, I hear that Pluto and a number of other orbiting bodies that don’t rate full planetary status are being called “dwarf planets”.
Shouldn’t that be “little people planets”?
Last night I and my visiting family had dinner at my cousin’s house. My nephew Mitchell was outside playing with his second cousins (they are twins and he can’t tell them apart, so he calls them both by the name “SchuylerandJordan”). The grown-ups were at the dinner table yakking. We all heard the crash. Mitchell had come running into the house, and did not see that the front door screen was closed. He took the entire door off its hinges as he blew into the room at full speed. As he wept (pretty much unhurt, just jarred a bit) he cried “I was running too fast, and I thought the door was open and I breaked it!” Apparently breaking screens is something he is very good at. That one was the fourth one he’d come somehow wrecked in recent memory….
More things of a more interesting nature later, when I have it in me again to write some more…
Could I use the word more more in a sentence?
There are some foods that are quintessentially TMI…things that you can count on getting served regardless of the year you go, where you go, or who is doing the cooking for you. Things like Kool-Aid, peanut butter and jellies, and baked oatmeal. I’ve never met anyone who has gone on Teen Missions and eaten baked oatmeal who didn’t love it. In fact, many of my kids feverishly copied down the recipe before going home.
But most people have never had baked oatmeal, unless they’ve gone on TMI or are the family member of someone who has. The eating of baked oatmeal ushers one into a rare fraternity.
I am going to give you non-TMIers the rare opportunity to try baked oatmeal for yourselves! Here’s the recipe. And I’m giving it to you as it’s given to us. A recipe that feeds 30! Taken directly from the TMI “Feeding The Multitudes” cookbook:
A quick division by five ought to have this recipe at a nice manageable size! If you try it out, let me know what you think! If you like it when you aren’t on TMI, you should consider going on TMI. There is nothing like a big piece of hot steaming baked oatmeal to make a tummy feel great on a cold African winter morning! Or on whatever kind of morning your team wakes up to wherever they are!
I cook mine with white sugar, not brown, and you don’t have to pour the warm milk over it if you don’t wish to. It’s delicious all by itself!
I had 23 children this summer. I did not intend to! I tried to get my kids to call me Auntie Lou or something, since I am not a mother nor ever plan to be one. My kids didn’t care about that, and the name “Mama Lou” eventually stuck. Even the other leaders called me that. As a 41 year old, I must have seemed old enough to all of them to be Mama. The next oldest person, Abner, the other head leader, was/is only 24 himself! (Counting the other leaders, I guess I had 26 kids!)
I don’t FEEL old enough. But, since I tended their boo-boos, and gave them their medicines, and cooked for them, and hugged them and all that sort of thing, I suppose I was more motherly than I was auntly. While at first when the “Mama Lou” thing started, I kind of cringed, thinking that I would never like being called that!! I didn’t look forward to hearing THAT called out to me all summer.
BUT, eventually, I realized what a tremendous compliment I was being paid. Here were all these kids missing home, missing their moms, and they bestowed upon me the gift of letting me temporarily fill that position for them.
I miss my kids. I liked being a mama. Go figure.
Being a regular poster to my blog (usually at least one entry per day), it is a daunting prospect to look back at two months of life crammed to the edges with stories and all of them as yet unwritten. My my. Does one start at the beginning and work forward in a chronological manner? One could. But I think what I will do is write random stories and hope that at the end you get a picture of what my summer was like. I believe I will start out with a light tale of things I did NOT do this summer!
- I did NOT shave my legs once I left on June 15th.
- I did NOT shave my armpits once I left on June 15th.
- My hairbrush broke on June 16th, and I did not brush my hair since that happened.
- I did NOT bathe exactly often. In fact, I am pretty sure that I can count the number of times I did on just my fingers.
Here’s a picture of some of my girls and THEIR crop! This was taken at debrief at the end of the summer, so don’t you be gettin’ any ideas that we slep in proper beds all summer! We did not!
5. I did NOT sleep in a proper bed all summer!
This is Tina, Sonja, and Rachel! Thanks, ladies, for sharing! Strong work!!
Shaving was just too much trouble, both at boot camp in Florida and in Africa. And since bathing was a difficult enough prospect, shaving was a luxury that none of us girls could really afford! We bathed out of buckets. The water was either pumped out of the ground using a hand pump, pulled out of a deep well using a bucket on a rope, or drawn from a river. In all cases the water was brrrrrrr cold. Mind you, in Zambia, July and August are winter months. The days are warm enough, but the nights are freezing cold. So much so that most of us never even got out of our clothes, not even to sleep. In my case that meant wearing socks, sometimes long underwear, regular underwear, pants, undershirt, T-shirt, sweatshirt, and a chitenge over all of that. Chitenges will be discussed in a later posting.
I only changed my clothes when I bathed, which was on Thursdays because that was Sheema day. Sheema day will be discussed in a later posting.
I ran my fingers through my hair once a week after I washed it. Otherwise it was pulled up in a pony tail and left to do its own thing!
I have been home for less than 24 hours and have already showered twice (but still have not shaved nor brushed my hair). What a luxury tap water is. I will discuss the luxury of water in a later posting as well.
I sure miss all “my children”, but am sooooo glad to be back home…