I am no longer able to keep the days straight. But it really doesn’t matter. The experience is the same whether or not I give you the correct point on a calendar.
Our team is dear to me. It’s always encouraging to see how a group of people with little to no prior experience with each other can come together, often meeting for the first time at the baggage claim, and work together so nicely. On this particular team we seem to have a lot of history. Brad has worked with Austin and with Rudy on more than one other project. Heather is a former intern who worked with the Crawfords when they were in the East Africa office. Greg is on his third trip. Jordan is a Long-Term Volunteer and was with the Crawfords in the UK office. I could go further with this, but the web begins to get complex and my jet-lagged brain can’t take much more.
Alisha, Brad’s wife, is filling in everywhere. Her energy astounds me. A day or two ago she went down to the nursery school and taught for a couple of hours. Some of the kids only speak Swahili and none of us know all their names yet. I followed Alisha, knowing it would be good for video clips, but a mzungu with a big camera is a monster of a distraction so I had to bail. Alisha used to teach so she has the background for it, but this is a totally different experience. Besides the language barrier and lack of resources, it was stifling hot in the tent where classes are held. She took the kids out for some fresh air and to get rid of the wiggles, but finding a place to play without sheep in the way was a problem. Still, she knew how to roll with it. She had them all playing an organized game in no time while I was off being all mature and talking to the sheep.
Speaking of sheep, Alisha knows how to cure sleep issues: workout videos. I have not done anything of the sort in years, only cycling and archery. This was a “T25” Beachbody workout: all hip-hop type dance moves, highly aerobic, no stops, and we are at 9000 feet elevation. Think copious wheezing and comedic lack of coordination. If the whole Mzungu Petting Zoo experience did not leave me feeling white enough, this absolutely finished me off. Also, I was really close to barfing.
Photographically, things are going well. The computer has not acted up and Jane asked if I could put together a short montage of clips that she could share with the VBS at her church when she goes back home to Texas. I was happy to oblige and the resulting project was the inspirational kick I needed to begin creating a couple of other projects from the footage I have gathered so far. Jane’s video short is on my Vimeo channel or you can watch it below. I am taking my exhausted self to bed now.
We are missionaries with Engineering Ministries International, based in Colorado Springs, and traveling around the globe to serve.
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