In Chichewa uzungu is the plural word for white men (mzungu is the singular). We hear uzungu. a lot. Driving down the street children will yell it as we pass. The occasional adult will holler it as well. I've decided to start responding with "uzungu? Kuti?!" Which means, "white men? Where?" We'll see how it goes.
On Sunday (after Lewis made an early morning run to the mechanic to get two new tires) we picked up Lancy and Juliana Kachali and drove to Mzuzu (about five hours)
Seriously, the drive to Mzuzu is one of the most beautiful drives you can imagine. Rolling hills, soaring boulders out of nowhere, mountains in the distance. Green and gold fields swaying in the breeze; red soil peaking through. Thatch roof houses dotting the hills, followed by dense green forests. We're told that there used to be much larger forests, but deforestation is rampant. Every now and then we'd come across a green meadow and you could see the black dots of tree stumps poking through. Everyone knows it's a problem, but little is being done to rectify it.
It's cooler in Mzuzu since it's higher in elevation. The weather this weekend reminded me of the beautiful Pacific Northwest: chilly and rainy.
We stopped at the Kachali family farm/home before finding our guest house (Anglican Rest House). We then returned to the farm for dinner. It was a lovely evening spent getting to know the Kachali clan better, unfortunately something I ate during the day was not agreeing with me and we had to cut our visit a little short and head back to town
The guest house was clean and comfortable and relatively inexpensive. The next day was the last day of Unleavened Bread. We met in a small classroom in the village near the Kachali home. We had a sermonette from Brennan, a sermon from Lewis, and two sets of special music. One in Chichewa and the other the hymn "Be Not Afraid My People."
I love how much music is included in the services here. We sang hymns as we waited for services to start, and the song leader will often add one or two hymns to the "traditional" 3-1-1-1 format. And we often have one or two special music pieces.
That evening we once again dined at the Kachali's, along with several ladies from the congregation. It's a small group, but they are faithful.
Before traveling I had made some chocolate no-bake cookies. They were typically delicious. Our sweet Juliana has an even sweeter tooth, but chocolate makes her a bit goofy
As it was getting late we headed back to our guest house. We had intended to go to a game reserve the next day, but there had been so much rain lately it was recommended that we go another time. We considered going to the lake for a bit before heading home, but I was still not feeling 100% so we decided to just go straight home.
I'm so glad we did. Brennan developed some kind of rash and has quarantined himself in his room
On Wednesday Lewis worked on his sermon and other church business. I worked on my job, and Michala took care of Brennan.
On Thursday Lewis and I had the opportunity to visit Darlington and Fidelia Misomali, and their two children. It was wonderful to see their home and get to know their story better. They're a bit new to the faith and had many questions, but they are unquestionably faithful. It's such a blessing to get to know God's people; to walk with them on their journey with (and to) God.
Friday Lewis was very busy meeting up with members to counsel, picking up gifts for family back home, going to the grocery store for us, and dealing with some paperwork regarding the construction of the church hall. I stayed home and worked myself. I love how much Lewis loves the work he is doing; even when it's a frustrating task, he does it with such love. Sometimes I still can't believe that he married me! What a blessing.
Saturday was "youth day" at services. Young adults and teens led songs, gave the sermonette, gave announcements, special music, and closing prayer. Lewis spoke about "what really matters" taken primarily from the book of Ecclesiastes. We ended the fast with chicken tacos with fresh pico de gallo from Michala and fresh tortillas from me. I could eat tacos everyday. This next week will be a busy one as we prepare to head home to the U.S. for a visit.
Uzungu? Kuti?! (18 of 52)
Sunday, April 23, 2017
Mzuzu, Northern Region, Malawi