The before picture:
I guess we have one more talent to add to his long list of abilities. (Although, he's made me promise that I won't offer his services to any of our friends.)
Our lakizo (holiday) began last Friday when we boarded a bus to Dar es Salaam. We visited our friends Crystal and Marie, spent a day at the pool, and went car shopping. The first day of car shopping was highly disappointing. None of the ideal vehicles (rugged SUVs that will handle the dirt roads up to the villages) in our price range were in good shape mechanically. We were both discouraged, and began to pray that God would open a door for us. God did.
The next day, we found a Honda CR-V in good condition with low miles that was being sold by another expat. This car is not ideal since it is not nearly rugged enough to handle roads to the villages (we need something that is a “real truck”), but the CR-V will serve as a temporary solution for our need to transport our young family around Tanzania. The price was very good, so Paul and I both felt peace about buying this vehicle. We plan to drive it until God provides the additional funds we need to purchase the rugged vehicle that will meet all the needs we have for our ministry. For now, we are really enjoying having our own wheels again!
After we purchased our car in Dar, we spent the remainder of our break in Dodoma, the city where we'll live after language school. We really enjoyed our time there. We met the Burunge translators and other staff with whom we'll be working. We visited the school that our kids will attend. We found a house to rent. And, we spent time with our friends, Jonathan and Rachel.
Here we are out to dinner in Dodoma (a place run by an Italian that serves great pizza!):
The house we'll be renting:
We arrived back at the campsite on Saturday evening, and are beginning to settle back into our little “home.” Even though our break was busy, we were grateful to find a car, visit with friends, and see our new home. Our time away gave us the renewed energy we need to buckle down again and finish strong.
Before we know it, the next phase of our ministry will be underway!
After completing our laundry and hair-trimming duties, our family and a few friends took a 2k hike to a waterfall near the campsite. It was a beautiful, sunny day. Josiah was so excited to be exploring that we nearly had to run to keep up with him.
When hiking in Tanzania, it's always a good idea to watch out for thorns like these. They're everywhere!
When we reached the waterfall, we all had fun climbing around on the huge rocks in the river. It also made for good photo opportunities. All of our running water comes straight from the river via an aqueduct all the way from the waterfall. (Don't worry, we don't drink it.)
Today was a lovely day as well. A group of us traveled into Iringa town to attend a local English-speaking church service. It was wonderful to worship corporately in our own language and to fellowship with other expatriate believers in the area. The fellowship even provides Sunday School for the children, which was a nice treat.
When we returned home, we had lunch and naps before heading down to the TV banda to play games with some of the other campsite residents. Several of us pulled out the dominoes to play Chicken Foot (old-school...yes, but good fun). We even interested some of the younger girls, and taught them how to play. Somehow, I have a feeling that Chicken Foot might become a tradition around here.
I often forget how restful a good weekend can be. This was definitely one of them.