We are just sitting here on the veranda having our cup of coffee and rusks this Saturday morning. The air is brisk as the rainy season has come in, so the temperature has dropped dramatically. It is now 72º F, so we’re in paradise. The temperature was setting in at about 90º by this time of morning just a couple of weeks ago! I get up at about 6 AM to make coffee and prepare the sitting area out on the veranda before Christi joins me for a quiet beginning to our day. She puts out crumbs on the railing around the veranda for the birds. In the course of the hour we sit here, we generally have about ten different species of birds drop down to eat the crumbs. Each morning we have so many kinds of birds it is absolutely entertaining; from Hornbills to unique little yellow birds, navy blue birds, sparrows and queleas. Then the little dog, Cleo, comes up to scare them off and the big dog, called “Big Man”, comes up, and then we chase them both off, because what we really enjoy is the number of birds that come! Amazing.
No water for a shower this morning. The reason there is no water is… Well, I guess I don’t know the answer to that one, as this is often the case around here. All year long, we have times when either there is no water, or there is no electricity. And it is all quite unpredictable. Actually, the published reason for no water this time is: “We are filling the new big pool!” (just being completed in its construction for the school -Okavango International School – on the campus) It is a huge blessing that was given to the school children! Now that it is finally coming to completion we hope to, someday, swim in it! In the meantime, it is drinking up all the water. Ha Ha! So, that is the current reason we are only able to wash our faces. Next month, it will most likely be just because “no water came in from town”.
We are living in the team house, so, there is a lot of activity around here. At the moment we have the big house to ourselves. (There are enough beds to sleep 19 people) However, the young couple who live next door have their bathroom under renovation, so they come to our house for showers. Just now, Kelly came over and I told her from a distance, “Sorry, but guess what?” She said, “No water?”, “No water!”. “Shame”.
The neighbors on the other side of us, in the residential side of the campus, are Michael and Heather Walker. They have four children. They are moving to Labotse, (16 hours of driving) at the lower end of the country (Botswana is about the size of Texas). All of the Walker family have moved their truck and things to Labotse, but Heather has stayed, and today will move into our Team house to join our happy family. Until Tuesday, when we fly home to Texas, we will continue our “Big House, Team House Family” with all sorts of people coming and going all day long. We truly enjoy the community here.
They have given us a little Corolla to drive. We do get to drive it some, but often it is booked out for someone else to drive to take care of errands. When we get the keys we head for Maun (6 kilometers away) to take care of what we need and to end the day at a restaurant across from the airport called the Bon Arrivee. We get our “frequent” cappuccino and enjoy it so much. Maun is one of the world’s most unique and popular safari areas. We can sit there drinking our cappuccinos and watch huge and unique safari vehicles pass by. People from all over the world venture in, all looking like they have “just landed” and carrying the strangest back packs and dragging odd luggage. It is part of life here in this desert land, which also has African animals running wild out in the bush. We only see the safaris, but it is somewhat at arms length to us, because Christi and I have not left the village of Maun since we arrived four months ago. We have been totally focused on touching the lives and ministering to the congregation of the Village Church, as this has been our assignment. We have thoroughly enjoyed it, but are now preparing to leave as Jerry Lackey has completed his medical treatment and returned home (Jerry has been declared totally cancer free by the MD Anderson Cancer Center of Houston, Texas!!!). On Tuesday we fly away to Johannesburg, to connect with our Delta flight to Senegal, and then on to Atlanta and then to Houston and home to San Antonio.