for those who don't want to just wait it out

like the song says this is a blog for someone who wants to say something (anything) and who's happy to wait and see what time will bring...

Saturday, July 05, 2008

One week through

Ever wondered if a whole country could change it's mood over a couple of days? This one can. On Wednesday night a whole lot of people (mostly men) come here for the weekend (remember that church is on Fridays and ppl go back to work on Sunday - weird I know) for a 'good' time of money, alcohol and sex...

As the guys went off to a mass village wedding (our turn is next week) we decided to have a bit of a girly night with some pampering and then a wander around the mall (I know I know, trust me, we are doing mission stuff too!). It was amazing to see how the women around here seemed to change over night. The mall is the place to see and been seen, and the women were definitely out on parade. I'm not quite sure how it fits in with their religious/cultural beliefs to have an abiya that's only buttoned under the bust line to reveal cleavage under a bright red top... but apparently some can get away with it. Although I've only worn the proper abiya and hijab when we went to the mosque - there was a part of me that was longing for the anonymity of it that night. Alex I take it back, these men just stare, a lot, just without making any comments. Although I haven't had to tell anyone yet that I'm worth more than two camels (pictured here because we did actually go and meet the Kings camels - turns out their worth a fair chunk of change each...) I get the feeling it wouldn't be too far off if I walked around on my own (mental note, stay in groups).

Speaking of the mall, we've been able to spend some time there meeting and talking with locals about who we are and what the differences are in our cultures and religious beliefs. I made a friend within my first couple of days here, named 'N', and she asked if she could give me her mobile number so that we could keep talking. We meet up for coffee and desert the other night to keep talking and she wants to keep talking throughout the rest of the month that we're here for which I think is pretty damn cool...

As a team, we finished off the centre we've been working on and I started crying (typical) when we got to take my favourite little friend into the room and let him be the first to see it. He can't speak much but it was very clear and obvious that he couldn't believe that anyone would think that he was worthwhile of such little efforts on our behalf... we had some amazing opportunities talking with the staff of the centre about why we are here. Truth be told, I don't care if these kids never really comprehend all that has been done and said by us over the last week. The God I know, is good, and just and a loving Father and my only prayer is that one day they will know that.

All round - it's been a pretty great first week. We have been stunned and humbled by the generosity of the people who are hosting us - every night someone has either taken us out for dinner or brought food to us, they've lent us two cars and we (Rachel and I) are staying with the loveliest hosts.

Two superficial lessons that I've learnt this week?

1) you can get flu like symptoms no matter what climate you're in - thanks to Rachel getting sick on the plane and having some massive temperature shifts I've got some kind of cold... the good news is you stand outside for more than 30 seconds and you have your own little sauna

2) keep a bottle or two of water in the car for when the radiator quickly runs our of water - I learnt that one yesterday when the temp gauge spiked, the cold air turn hot and water was spitting out of the hood... apparently you need to stay on top of these things in 50+ heat???


  • At 1:29 am, Anonymous alex said…

    AH! And I just commented on the last post about how surprised I was re your comment on the non-staring fellas! Funny. They're not that bad in Barcelona... yet.x


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