So, as we only have 18 days left here in South Africa I thought I would start to write down a list of things that I will miss and things that I will remember. I probably will add more as the thoughts come to me, but after a couple days of reflecting I feel this is a good list so far:
Things I Will Miss
All the people here at Themba – staff, management, students and faculty
The colour of the mountain at the various stages of the sunset.
Afrikan sunsets period
The drive to Piet Retief with the other volunteers.
My drive on Wednesdays to Kwan-Gema.
Kids laughing at me when I read or speak isiZulu.
Baba Shabalala never speaking English to me.
The sound of the river next to our house.
Having a game park just two hours away.
The singing and the music.
Chicken and rice lunches!
Putu, samp and amagwinya.
The bird life
Playing tennis with the Dhliwayos
Running with locals along the dirt road.
Avoiding cars, chickens, snakes and cows on my runs.
Cheap dental care.
Vegetarian meals at Reinhild and Nico’s place.
Pretoria – Tribeka and Col Cacchio’s at the mall.
Being able, still, to watch rugby.
Soccer is life!
Fanta, KFC or ice cream treats in Piet Retief.
Lunch time with Mama Ingrid and the volunteers.
The stars on a moonless night. The shining of the grass roofs on a full moon night.
Kids singing “Hello, how are you?” when we drove past
Smiles on the students faces.
Our music students.
Making Siphiwe laugh.
“Baba wethu osezulwini…”
Our other hometowns – Wakkerstroom and Luneburg.
The CD recording, the LTS visit, the Amahoro gathering…
Skhumbuzo, Mzwakhe, Sibongile or Peter saying, ‘Kenny’ and ‘Ellie’
Being called Bongani and Bongekile
Friday morning devotions
The feel of frost on my shoes early in the morning
Seeing Nsizwa drive up the dirt road like a bat out of hell
The mist and smoke rising up over Mabola as the sun rises in Mpumalanga.
Doing puzzles, playing cards or reading books with my wife because there is nothing else to do.
Going ‘upstairs’ to our office to watch a movie.
Rusks with rooibos tea.
Things I Will Remember
Having to turn on the water everyday
The power going out every other day
Having too search for transport everyday
Once getting that transport finding out it has no petrol or the battery is dead or something else is wrong…
The pipes freezing in the middle of winter. .
Driving the car up the hill in the mornings.
Coasting down a hill when you are almost out of petrol.
The pot holes on the way to Luneburg.
Never being able to fully understand the church services we were attending.
The cultural and linguistic miscommunication.
Walking up, down and all around Themba and Mabola.
The division still present between races.
Our trip to the Piet Retief hospital.
Trying to get something done with a big company like Eskom or Telkom. AYE!
All the bugs.
Zionists and Shemba services on Saturdays.
Trucks on the road.
The drive to Pretoria.
How cold Afrika can get.
How dusty and dry it is.
Elizabeth’s chronic cough.
Sharing a heater between our two offices.
The Themba Trust Organogram.
Our sort of other home – Piet Retief
“That tire’s not good…”
The disappointment on peoples’ faces when we missed a class or when we had to say goodbye.
Fetching drinking water for our house.
The smell of sulfur after a shower.
The smell of burning electrical sockets.
The click sound when our power went out.
The Afrikaans language
P.S. There won’t be any posts for a few days, Elizabeth and I are off to Swaziland with Tukie and then Sodwana Bay with Reinhild and Nico. Next week will be busy with a LEAP gathering and then our Drakensberg trip. Soooo, I will see y’all on the flipside probably with a post in September. Shalom!