Sunday, September 4, 2011

Kenema, Sierra Leone (pictures later)

Sunday & Monday, August 28-29, 2011

Amarachi decided she wanted to see me in African attire and when I didn’t bring anything with me she had two dresses made for me including jewelry.  They are quite pretty so I wore one today, even with my headscarf.  The ladies at the hotel were impressed with my African look.

Lucia and her husband (who joined the church a month ago) both spoke in Sacrament Meeting and gave really good talks about family.  We also met her mother-in-law who was also baptized.  It was a nice day and I understood the talks.  Sometimes they switch between English and Creole--they really are not that far apart but somehow the pronunciation is different enough to confuse us. 
After church we went to the Primary but there were only a few girls there today.  That was because of the rains of last night—it woke me up often because it pounded so hard. It was still sprinkling today and it kept a lot of people away.  They split this Branch so we then went to the other Branch and handed out a few more pillowcase dresses.  I can see that I should have brought some of the T-shirt dresses too because they are larger, and I was surprised that even the larger dresses did not fit the biggest girls in Primary.  I think they will be wearing leggings underneath them.  We will probably hand the rest out to the amputee camp, to the children of the amputee’s, on our way back to Freetown later this week and find an orphanage in the area.

It was fun to see Lucia and also Messie, both former Hygiene Trainers here in Kenema.  When we went to the other Branch we saw Josephine too for a big hug.  This afternoon three of our Makeni Hygiene Trainers came by for a visit just so that we can thank them and give them a certificate.  Also, one of the Site Monitors who lives here also came.  We had them each give us ideas of ways to improve the next project.  Most of their ideas were good, and some of them we had already decided upon, some were new to us.  Although we will never have a perfect project, we do feel we can improve as the years go by.

Monday: Jim & I and Jonathan drove around looking at more wells in Kenema from our old project.  We borrowed a USB modem where you buy time for it, from Amarachi so we could get our e-mail again. We found a man who knows how to break granite inside of wells. They do it all the time because that is how they make gravel, but it is more difficult inside a deep well.  We have one at a clinic and have been partially successful but it remains dry for two months when the rains quit.  We are going to give it yet another try to see if we can get it for her the entire year. 

The car we have rented from Turay’s friend for our travels is an old, small, SUV type of BMW.  It is an English car, i.e. you have the steering wheel on the right side of the car driving down a Western road.  It is hard to get used to.  The passenger door does not open from the outside so Jim always has to let me in.  It is not very high centered so we have to carefully drive over boulders in the road.  The best thing is that it runs and the air conditioner works like a champ--always a big plus in Africa!

It has been raining hard every night.  This has made this journey very pleasant for us.  It hasn’t rained too much during the day, which has made it easier to look at the projects. 


Mom & Dad, E/S Greding, Jim & Karen 

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