Thursday, 30 January 2014

Greetings once again to all my friends and family back in Canada and the US.
Things are settling nicely into routine with college classes and the like.  I'm not sure some days where the time goes, but each day seems to go quicker than the one before.

We have had great opportunities to fellowship with other professors and their families from the college.  Last Friday we hosted our principal and his family to supper/dinner (whichever terminology you prefer) at our home.  So there were eight of us which is just about the maximum at our little cottage.  Tomorrow evening we are hosting our Academic Dean and his family.  There are five of them and two of us so again nearly a full house.  Then in early February we are planning to host a  braai  (BBQ back home) (gocha in Shona) for all the college teaching staff and their spouses.  We are hoping that Bishop, who rents the big house on this property and has a gazebo, will allow us to use the gazebo.  It has lots of room and has an outdoor fire-pit for the braai.  That will be great fun.  Will give you details on how that goes with my next blog.  So as you can see we are settling in nicely.  This has indeed become our second home.

I just started Shona classes  today.  Grace, whom many of you met through a previous picture that I sent, is going to tutor me.  I am told it is an easy language to learn but considering the time I have put into learning French and have yet to master it, I'm not sure how easy the learning will be.  I do listen to it being spoken everyday so that might prove to be a help as I struggle to learn.  My students and others at the college, keep urging me to greet them in Shona.  My brain does not seem to pick up on things quite as quickly as it used to.  Now that's a scary thought, but a reality non-the-less.

I am in the process of trying to plan a trip to Nairobi, Kenya to accompany our principal and academic dean for a Teacher's Conference in February.  My Temporary Work permit has not come through yet so I am still in this country on visitor's Visa.  Working out the details of what that looks like as I leave the country and return. I am praying that the work permit comes through before I go as it certainly would simplify things and reduce costs
We are taking steps to replace the existing printer/copier at the college.  The existing one has been out of operation for the past six months or more and the cost to repair it exceeds the cost of buying a new one.  So, having said that thank you to those of you who support this ministry.  Your support is going towards that purchase.  Thank you, thank you, thank you!
The college is also taking steps towards updating our library.  Our academic dean is working on that and it looks promising.  What a blessing that will be.  The library currently is very outdated and text books and the like are in short supply.  But we trust that God is good and will supply our needs.

Glen keeps busy doing much the same things as he would do if we were back home in Canada.  He has been busy repairing the lawn mower for the caretaker here on the property.  He brought some tools and supplies with him from Canada and this week will be going to the college to check out needed repairs on our desks and chairs.  He also does most of the day to day work here at our cottage and slowly it is beginning to take on the feel of truly being our home.

We are always amazed to see local women carrying huge bundles on their heads with apparently no effort.  One of the pictures I have included is of two ladies we met one day as we were out for our walk.

We spend some time just exploring the area and the other day we went to Chopungu Sculpture Park where we watched some local sculptors at their trade.   We enjoyed chatting with many of them and learning about some of the stones they work with.   The park is in the city of Harare and not very far from where we live.  I am including a picture of one sculptor taken as he was hard at work.

That's about it for this until next time
Love and blessings to you all.

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