I find myself these days sitting in meetings and smiling…life is just so different.
When normal life now involves…
* Calculating down to a fine art the amount of offal required to be purchased to feed 25 more children at a care point
* Discussing more efficient ways to cook beans to use less firewood
* Calculating break-even points for chicken income generating projects and estimating chicken mortality rates :-S
* Dodging people / potholes the entire width of lanes / cows / goats / dogs / etc. every time we go for a drive
* Bucket bathing being such a familiar concept and a perfectly acceptable alternative to a shower
* Eating the innards/every part of a chicken and not even thinking twice about it
* Female Care Workers (think middle aged women) attacking and killing snakes with shovels to protect the “white people” 🙂
* Cutlery…what do we use that for again?!
And some of the incredible things that I have the opportunity to be a part of every day:
* Planning for the shopping and distribution of mattresses and blankets to some of the most vulnerable children in our communities to make the winter months more bearable
* Being part of discussions to strategise moving into new communities to expand our work and reach more of the most vulnerable children in a number of countries we are working in
* Working with our local service centre staff to build capacity in them: helping them plan, problem solve, prioritise tasks etc. Experiencing the joys and frustrations of what it means to really build capacity in people.
* Praying in every meeting / at every meal / at every opportunity with a real expectation that God will move; and indeed it is only by the grace of God in so many of the situations we encounter.
And there are so many things I no longer take for granted:
* Access to clean drinking water / having running water in a tap!
* Electricity… meetings in the dark, with no laptops, back to good old pen and paper
* Clothes Washing machines, an incredible modern invention!
* Safety every time we are on the roads, in light of how many serious road accidents happen everyday
* Every meal we eat…when so many kids, gogo’s and families I know by name will go hungry today
I gradually feel I am becoming that bit much more useful every day, but at the same time every day realise just how much I still have to learn!
Life is so different for sure. But I wouldn’t have it any other way.