Wednesday, 10 August 2016

August 7-10th, 2016

Dear friends and family
Our time in Canada was super and looking back it flew by.  We so enjoyed spending time with so many of you as we waited for our Temporary Work permit.  We thank all of you from the bottoms of our hearts for the many prayers and support for our mission here in Zimbabwe.  So now for a bit of a catch up. 

I believe when I last wrote we were expecting visits from our missionary friends from Ontario and from the US.  We had a fabulous time with them even though they did not all manage to be at our place at the same time.  I've inserted a couple of pictures taken from our deck looking out onto 'Mount Neverest" so called by our great-granddaughter Tika, who when she climbed it with great-gramps a few years back declared when she reached the top "I ain't never going to climb that mountain again"...and so the mountain was named Mount Neverest.  

The first picture is Gaye and Elizabeth Norrie, us and Deb and Mike Wilson.  The second one is again Gaye and Elizabeth, us and Rhonda and Larry Allan. Norrie's will becoming back to Zimbabwe in September.  Not sure when, of if, the Wilsons and the Allans will return to Zim.  It was great to connect, share a time of fellowship and our Zim experiences. 

I arrived safe and sound in Harare on Friday evening at 5:10 pm.  That would be 7:10 am for those of you in B.C., 8:10 am in Alberta and so on and so forth for those of you in other parts of Canada and the U.S.  
Richard Chimbetete, from the Village of Hope, met me at the airport and took me to my cottage.  Thanks Richard, it truly was much appreciated.
Saturday was pretty much a write off.  I did walk to the nearby shops to pick up a few groceries.  Not much else that day.
Sunday, August 7, 2016 – 3:00 pm and I have just returned from church at Fountain of Hope, where I went with my dear friend Nellice. The pastor at Fountain of Hope is both a friend and my colleague from the college; Rev. Fanny Dube.  Service was great and it was good to see some familiar faces in the congregation as well.  Following the church service Nellice and I went for a delightful lunch and I have just now arrived home to the cottage.

 I decided that I should at least begin my Blog.  So this part of the blog will be copy and paste as I can’t access my blog because I do not currently have my phone hooked up and do not have my computer internet connections and that will have to wait until Wednesday at least.  Monday and Tuesday are ‘Hero’s Days’ here in Zimbabwe and public holidays so most services will be closed.  Fortunately I do have Zesa and different from when we left Zim in December, I am told that since end of June we have had no interruptions in Zesa.  Wow!  What a treat that is.  And very different from the 75% outages we had when we were here before.  I’ll just appreciate it while I can and be prepared for whatever lies ahead.  I do have a phone that Glen left here and so have been able to at least stay in touch with Glen.  Both my phone and my computer require that I re-register as I have been out pf the country more than six months.
Well…just paused and went for a walk.  Was gone about an hour and when I came back I had no Zesa and as well, the phone Glen left here, and I thought I could use, tells me it is ‘Serviced Out’.  I guess that means it has to be reregistered as well.  So until Wednesday I am without phone and computer service so this blog won’t get sent out until then.  Success, the Bishop’s gardener is on the property though and he does have a phone I can borrow if I need to make a call before then.  The Zesa outage only lasted an hour or two and is back on now.  So, praise the Lord for small mercies.  Oh, yea, the sermon this morning was all about  ‘power through faith, and relying on God and not on humankind!!!  Just a gentle reminder for me of how important our faith is.
Some of you might have heard via the news of an Emirates Air plane on fire that landed at Dubai on Thursday morning.  I haven’t heard of any injuries, but right now I don’t have access to news.  Much of the airport was closed and Dubai International had only one runway operating for at least a full day.  Many flights were cancelled or delayed, so I guess, in light of that, my 22 hour layover in Dubai was a God-send and our plane experienced no delay.
 Our dear friends, from Leduc days, Reid and Maureen Conrad, have a son, Joel who lives in Dubai.  I have known Joel since he was just a little child and now he is a grown man with a wife and two small children of his own (and a third one on the way).  Joel came to meet me at the airport and it was great to spend some time being escorted around Dubai.  Thanks Joel.  It was fun and certainly help to make my stopover pleasurable.
Tomorrow, I will go to our college (even though it is a holiday).  I am meeting with the Academic Dean to review some things.  I’m not sure what to expect as far as college changes.  I had a meeting with Murray Cornelius (International Missions Rep) who indicated the possibility of some significant changes, but I’ll wait and see.  I understand my role is more of a consultant although I do expect to be teaching some courses as well.
Then Wednesday we have a staff meeting/get together planned as we begin to unpack the library books we so graciously received from the combined efforts of AOG and PAOC.  A huge thankyou goes out to all involved in that lengthy process.  I know our students will benefit greatly.  Perhaps when I actually send this blog out I’ll have some pictures to include.

Monday, August 8th,  I went to the college, met with our academic dean, who updated me on changes.
Stopped and did some grocery shopping; then picked up Maka and Linda and brought them to the cottage for an afternoon visit and evening meal.  Maka has grown so much taller and is currently attending summer classes to improve those subjects she is struggling with.  She is going into grade seven which is pivotal as it determines which school she might get into for high school.
Tuesday, August 9th, 2016.Went on a long walk to stone market to greet friends there.
Lots of challenges, although relatively small such as keys not working.  Etc., etc.,
Write again tomorrow. 

Well, here it is tomorrow already.  August 10th, 2016.  Cut and paste has happened and my internet is now up and running and my phone should be very shortly as well.  Tawanda, our IT guy, took me uptown (I won't drive there alone) so I could get things hooked up.  It really is a blessing to have him around.   Spent the day at the college where I will be working helping to unpack and organize the library gifted to us.  Then on Friday we have a BOA meeting and an APTEA meeting.  So, I guess that will get me updated on what is really going on at our college. and give me some direction as to what my role will be.

Lots of bits and pieces here but I do hope that it gives you an overview of things here in Zimbabwe.

Blessings to all

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