A really great start to the day having wrestled overnight with the stationing of the ton and a half of generator facing us this morning. Having failed to find any form of mechanical lift to cover the 50 yards to position the beast Stephen and Mr Nkoma set off to the Great East roadside labour market and in true Zambian style returned with 20 beefy men with their gang master in the back of our “trusty” Hilux. After negotiating the cost of this” human lift” the generator was duly carried to its base and the gangmaster departed with the unenviable chore of paying off the team and dividing up k150 (at today’s fluctuating exchange rate-just under £10.00).
While Michael and his team of technicians commenced laying cables and connecting up the wiring to the generator and houses Stephen and I duly set off to purchase the content for the food hampers to be given the family heads of our orphans when we deliver the Christmas presents to the orphans. There is fortunately a large cash and carry where we purchased maize meal, cooking oil, salt and sugar. To get dried fish and dry beans we had planned to go the town market. (I call it Chipata Waitrose and a picture is attached). Having delivered the first load of food to Zoe house for safe keeping, with Michael in tow, who had finalised the successful connection of the generator, we called at the Spa supermarket for sustenance prior to facing Waitrose. Low and behold while having a cappuccino our pastors from the church we use here show up with their little daughter.
In conversation, Martha the pastors wife, discovers we are on a mission to face the hustle and bustle of Waitrose and buy dry beans and sun dried fish to complete the inventory of the hampers. She volunteers to accompany us to a friend who is a major bean supplier who she assures us will do a deal. Her friend turns out to be another pastors wife who sustains the family by her market stall. Yes, you have guessed it we do a deal and leave with over fifty kilos of dried beans and from round the corner I cleared out all the dried fish a stall holder had at again a tidy discount but much to her delight for an early day at work. We left Stephens four children breaking out, into various size bags, the salt, beans and dried fish for issue over the next four days. Our plan to start distributing our hampers and presents will commence on Friday as tomorrow the government are giving maize meal relief to all villagers in our area due to the failure of the maize crop from last years harvest. This is an indication of just how bad things are in the rural communities and the rains are already one month late this year to compound the issue for next year!! Both Michael and I are really astonished we have achieved so much this last 36 hours so thanks for your prayers.