Friday, November 30, 2007

Shoe quest

For much of today, we were on a quest for shoes. I had an idea that my red shoes that I wear all the time would not be the best ting for an African dance class so I sought little canvas tennies. Toward the end of the day, I found them. We also caught a movie in the evening, Beowulf.

Thursday, November 29, 2007

Kamanakao meeting

We drove down to Gaborone and checked into the Oasis Motel. We then went to the University of Botswana to meet with Kamanakao, the Shiyeyi cultural association.

Saturday, November 17, 2007

Amityville, Botswana

We woke up with the sound of bees through the room. At first, I assumed that there were mosquitos somewhere near my head. Then, I realized that the sound was constant, which would mean that they were near my head and not moving. I went to the window and saw that I wasn't mosquitos but bees, swarming on our screen, inside the glass (which was ajar). I got the camera and shot a little footage, realizing as I stopped filming that some of them were inside. I jumped up and we sprang into action. How were they getting in? How could we stop it? How would we get them out? We decided on smoke and got a fry pan with a lid, matches and newspaper. Rob held the curtain around me and I generated smoke. Most of the bees flew away and Rob was able to maneuver his hand under the screen and shut the glass. I think he trapped a couple but, hey, we tried to spare as many as we could. I'm only sorry that I didn't capture on film me saying, “They're inside!” Rob says it was classic horror movie material. Not the way you want to be spending 6AM on a Saturday morning, let me tell you.

He figures that their hive was destroyed in the big storm yesterday. We had heavy rainfall, as heavy as I've ever seen anywhere, and significant winds. It didn't last long but it was pretty intense while it lasted. Jim was here, meeting with us about future plans, and we thought for a brief moment that he was going to be stuck with us for longer than he had intended.

We're supposed to be taking it easy today but we have a lunch meeting with Jim and Tim, followed by an afternoon meeting with Gerrit, the BSB translation consultant for this region.

Thursday, November 15, 2007

Wednesday, November 14, 2007

big team meeting

We had an all-day meeting with the LBT Botswana team and went out to Spur for dinner.

Tuesday, November 13, 2007

trip home

Got the news in the morning that Tim's bags had arrived from Johannesburg so we swung by the airport, picked them up and hit the road. Rob got to talk to Jim about vernacular media project plans for the last half of the trip. When we were dropped off back at the Knights' place, we were really glad to be home. We chilled for the whole evening, playing games and hanging out. It was nice to be alone again with no prospect of another meeting until Thursday.

Monday, November 12, 2007

more meetings

Between meetings with ELCB people in the morning and running around to RETENG and Kamanakao, I got myself a whopper of a headache, with a side order of nausea. Rob had to take me back to the hotel room where I dosed myself with peppermint, Coke, water, Advil and a dark room. I kind of slept and woke up when he brought me my late dinner, a Greek salad. It was about 9PM at this point. What brought it on? So many plausible culprits; who is to say? Dehydration, hunger (no food or water since about 3PM until 8PM), stress (meeting so many new people with definite impact on my future)… you name it. I felt better after my short nap, though.

Tim's flight came in this evening but his luggage did not.

The hotel has wild kitties everywhere. They're skinny and skittish and they show up where you least expect them.

Sunday, November 11, 2007

ELCB in Gaborone

We went to the ELCB church and enjoyed the English service. Met Bishop Segatle, who just happened to be there that morning. We met more with Jim in the afternoon, getting some last minute details worked our before our meeting with RETENG on Monday. Then, we all went to dinner at Linga Longa. I joked that I definitely needed a beer but then I decided that I probably better just have a Malawian Shandy (ginger ale, lemonade and bitters). Imagine my surprise when the waitron returned with beers for everyone. No, we hadn't ordered a round but we took it anyway. I figured, hey, if it showed up without me ordering it, I must have needed it worse than I thought.

Saturday, November 10, 2007

The first round

Jim met with BSB folk in the morning and Rob and I hung out at the hotel. After lunch, we had a mini-siesta before having a first real in-country meeting with Jim. We hammered out 2 potential Namibia projects for me and talked about Botswana plans for the next year. We had an interesting dinner at an Asian restaurant at Riverwalk malk. Rob ordered beef bulgogi and cooked it himself, on a little charcoal brazier set up in the middle of the table. Pretty tasty. I was jealous, though he let me have some and my hot and sour soup was pretty great too.

Friday, November 09, 2007

Appointments we didn't make

Julia, from BSB, took us to immigration to work on our residence permit. She already got us a work exemption so the residence thing is all we still need. We paid our 500 pula and got a receipt that we can use to walk into the immigration office in Francistown and get an extension on our tourist visa, if the regular one delays past the first week of December.

Michael had a meeting at BSB so we decided to walk to the museum (just a 15 minute walk away) to see the San exhibit, hoping to bump into the missionaries Rob had worked with in D'kar, maybe the Naro choir. Just as we arrive at the reception desk, up walks one of the people Rob had worked with! She was just stopping by to straighten some display things before heading off again; just in time to catch us. Rob talked to her about how the project he had done last year was selling, they briefly discussed a trip for him to do another one. Then, we looked at the San artwork.

While walking back to BSB office, Rob suddenly said, “Oh! David Slater Music!” It was painted in big blue letters on a white gate we were passing. Rob had been wondering how he was going to get in touch with him to turn in our application for the traditional music camp coming up the first week of December. Sure enough, there was David! So, we registered. Rob will study the segaba for a week and I'll take contemporary Botswana dance.

We picked Jim up at the airport at went to dinner at Spur, where we begin asking about our eventual assignment in Namibia.

Thursday, November 01, 2007

First close call

I was escorting a couple of the Megahans children around on foot at Nswazi Mall and was passing by an ATM in an outdoor hallway on the way to Jubilee dress shop. The Kalanga Bible Translation Project is having a fundraiser tomorrow evening and I'm unsure if anything that I have here to wear would be suitable. So, I was going to see what I could buy from Dr. Mallya's wife and Rob, Peter and Happiness were tagging along for the stroll. As I passed a staircase in a crowded area, a man stepped in front of me onto the side of the staircase, kind of blocking my passage. People behind me were suddenly pressed into me and I kind of stood and waited for him to get out of my way. When we got through the press, Peter pointed out that my purse was open. He said that he and Happiness, who were walking right behind me, had seen a guy open my purse and stick his hand in the outer compartment. Rob was a bit further back and had noticed a guy paying attention to me but hadn't caught exactly what was going on. Peter said another guy behind him had made a noise that probably scared the guys off. Anyway, long story short, they didn't get anything out of my purse. Which is crazy; the place he had his hand is where my passport is. The large central area had my money wallet, my credit card wallet and my cellphone. He didn't grab any of those. Thank God! Lesson learned; the purse goes on the front of my body, flap side in.

And I didn't find a dress that I liked. Nothing that really spoke to me, anyway. I'll make do with what I have lying around for tomorrow, I guess, and go back next week to have something made for church and official wear.

latest newsletter

blasts from the Dancing Sni's past…