Yes, we are still in the land of the living. It was the turning of the page on the calendar that made me realize that it’s time that I put pen to paper again.
We have just experienced our hottest month yet in Uganda – one more month to go before the cooler temperatures arrive – that’s if the heat doesn’t kill me first. I don’t do heat very well, but Colin seems to bear it OK for the most part. We understand NZ is also experiencing high temperatures and humidity, so apart from air-conditioning in NZ and an electric fan in Uganda, we might well be experiencing the same discomfort.
School holidays are now officially over and the children donned their uniforms and started school on Monday 2 Feb, much to the children’s delight -and the aunties and uncles also if the truth be known.
Katie, our holiday program organizer did an excellent job creating things to entertain the different age groups, but by the end of 7/8 weeks the kids were ready for school again. We praise God that apart from the dogs stirring up the donkeys, and the donkeys kicking out and breaking both bones in a small boy’s leg, the school holidays were accident free. That is amazing considering how many children there are here. The little boy (Barnabas) is well looked after as he sits in his wheel chair with his leg in plaster. He laps up the extra attention and loves it when the kids push him around at great speed. My heart is in my mouth every time I see Barnabas being pushed that fast, but so far he hasn’t spilled out, so that’s a blessing, isn’t it? Now I’m starting to sound Dutch using a phrase like that.
We had been hoping to have a few days away this month, but what with visitors coming and lack of transport etc. we delayed it until this month. It may work out rather nicely as it’s our 45th wedding anniversary on the 7th Feb.
It was lovely having Colin’s 2nd cousin Joanne (Phil & Janice Aish’s daughter) and two of her daughters visit us for a few hours in mid-January. We haven’t seen Joanne since she was a small child; now she is a mum with three teenage daughters. They had planned to stay a couple of nights at the Ark, but their situation changed. The purpose of their Ugandan trip was to visit their two sponsor children on their way home from the UK. One of their sponsor children happened to live in a village not far from Noah’s Ark; the other is approximately a six hour road trip from Kampala. We were pleased to receive an e-mail from Joanne saying they had arrived safely back in NZ.
Talking about sponsor children, our sponsor child Judith turned 2 years old on the 11th Jan, so she got to celebrated her birthday in the usual way here at the Ark. A cake, a few presents, and all the children singing and celebrating with her. See photos below.
Auntie Teddie helping Judith cut the birthday cake
Judith is very happy with her large balloon
One of the highlights early this year was the opening of the 6th Family home unit which is the 3rd boys unit. This is a group of boys aged 9 -11 years. The Auntie in charge is a lovely Ugandan lady who has been working and preparing these boys for their move from the main children’s home. See photos below.
The boys and their Auntie waiting outside their new home
Papa proposing a toast with mango juice at the opening of the Boy’s Family Home Unit 3
The month of January has been more laid back for some of us, but now that the Secondary boarding students have returned, Bible studies will start next week. Colin is going to take a group of older boys through some studies on ‘Discipleship’ every Thursday night.
Mama is in Holland at the moment with 8 year old Zipporah, one of her little ones. They went to Reny’s wedding, a Missionary who legally adopted Suzanna – an Ark child. Zipporah was Suzanna’s best friend, so she got to go with Mama. They are due back on Saturday 7th – not soon enough according to Papa – he is missing his special mate of 40 plus years.
Since we don’t have much to report from last month I thought you might like to view some photos we took from a moving car. The first photo is for all roofing contractors, and the second is for all fencing contactors.
The roofing iron on many buildings is held down with bricks and old tyres, etc.
Fence and gate, Uganda Style
Recently I read a book on Ugandan customs, etc. It said that Ugandans think a fence around a property is to keep the owner in, not intruders out – go figure that one.
This photo of well loaded bicycles was taken especially for our family – beat that Arron!
There you go Ollie, a photo just for you. It’s a play centre call Ollie’s Play centre. The car was moving too fast so I missed the main Ollie’s Play Centre sign.
I was hoping to get a few photos of hair dressing salons for you Jamie, but there was too much traffic in the way. Some of the names of such places are quite a hoot.
This is a typical dressmaking/clothes shop.
A note on closing: A new baby arrived at the Ark on the 3rd of Feb; the police brought a tiny baby girl to the Ark in a cardboard box lined with old rags. The baby had been found on a fence line alongside a road. She seems to be in good health, just abandoned. A quick phone call to Pita (Mama) in Holland was made so she could name the new baby. The baby now waits for her Mama’s return on Saturday. Meanwhile Auntie Jessica is doing a fine job of looking after baby Vanessa.
Until next month, God bless.
Colin & Bev Winters