Sunday, June 14, 2009

“Peanut, Peanut Butter….and Jelly!!!!!”

I got up this morning and realized that all I had to eat yesterday was two peanut butter and jelly sandwiches! We have eaten peanut butter for lunch nearly every day since we arrived. It is easy to put in the car and take to where ever we “land.” Today, I didn’t eat at all until dinner. It was a great day!!! We went to the store and got all the “fixins’” to paint the iron bars on the windows at the school. There are about 20 street children who live at the school and we cannot trust them not to break in and vandalize the building. The one room that we have fixed up is beautiful!!! The walls are cream-colored and we did the trim in a bright yellow (Kristy’s idea.) It is so cheerful. Today, we primed the iron bars and then painted them white. It looks very nice…at least for Africa!? SMILE. I am so proud of what we are doing. While we waited for the primer to dry, I got to work with some of the boys and we filed and sanded the bike. Those guys were awesome!!!! It is funny how little it takes to communicate when people are busy doing the same thing. It was quite “neat” how in sync we were. We got so much done on the bike!!! I had started worrying about getting it sanded, but we spent about six hours on it and it looks great. Tomorrow, we will put another wrap on the bike and let it set. Then, on Monday, we will finish the sanding. I am quite pleased with this effort. The people that we have had to help us really understand what we are doing. There was one boy I want to tell you about. He kind of stood back during the work, but I really didn’t pay attention because I was so busy. At one point, I noticed that his hands were horribly deformed. In fact, I was a little shocked to see so much of what looked like a hand without a hand actually being there. Then, I found out the story. I hope you are sitting down. His name is Simon Peter and he is about 11-years-old now. About five years ago, he was at home and he was quite hungry and so he ate some of the food that was put aside for dinner. Granted, that is certainly not the right thing to do, but what happened next in unthinkable. His own father found out and was livid. So, to teach the boy a lesson, he held the boys two hands over a charcoal fire until his fingers fused. Basically, he has his thumbs and then stumps for the rest of his hands. You can only imagine the grief that I experienced when I heard the story and hugged that little boy. He has a very sad face, but I was told that he can write with a pencil and has some talent for art work. I will be watching after him next week to see what I can tell you more about him. Suffice it to say, this boy should be in all our prayers…he is a REAL victim of the culture here. We did get all the sewing machines put in the room and they look beautiful!!! Molly, our lead instructor, came in and she wept when she saw the room. She just cannot believe how beautiful a room she has to work in. Her home is awful and I hope to put her in one of the rooms with a bed some day. But, that will have to come in time. Another wonderful thing that happened today is that we found an English teacher!!!!!! Isa, whom the kids met when they were here, serves as the English teacher for the boys and he has agreed to teach the women the language. So, he and I will head to the Northern Choice Book Store that our friend, Robert, owns and get the supplies for the ladies on Monday. Everything is coming together so well. I just cannot tell you how much I have enjoyed these past three weeks here in Uganda. I am already starting to grieve coming home, but I do miss my family so much and I need to be there. I love it here very, very much! We have made more good friends with other “Muzungus” (white people) who are here doing mission-type work. There is an incredible group of people on the ground here trying to help the people as they recover from the war. There just aren’t enough of us. But, as we say, what we are doing, “matters to this one.” I am off to try to get some paint and sawdust off my body. I spilled a tin of primer on me and ruined some clothes and shoes. My own regret is that I don’t know if anyone will want them now, although I know there are people who would love to have these worn and very stained clothes in a heartbeat. Good night to you all. I love you. Sally


  1. hey sally, it sounds like you are having an awseome time. i really wish i was there. please give hugs and my love to everyone there. if u get a chance can u please get me another muzungu shirt ( my mom shrunk it like we wernt supposed to). i miss you so much and cant wait to have you home. love you so much
    - Katie Gazda

  2. Hi that I am home and not paying a bundle for Internet access, I can respond. I love you so much and can't wait for EPIC to get up and running. You are very special!!!!!