Here is a brief recap. Our trip here wsa pretty uneventful. We had a rushed, but fun tour of London. The plane rides were long and we were completely exhausted, so we were very glad to arrive in Uganda.
Monday, we spent getting through the airport, exchanging money, and then driving for 5 hours to Mbale town. We ate dinner, took showers, and went straight to bed that night.
Tuesday, we went to work early in the morning on the library for Wambwa Primary School. It took a little bit for everyone to get the hang of the building and sorting, but after that we really got in a good system and we knocked out the library fast. So a lot of the afternoon we got to spend playing games with the children, singing songs, and passing out the gifts (pens/pencils, bracelets, a paperbook, and a gospel tract). Many of the students at this school are very poor and their English is not great, so the teachers helped to translate for us and explained that we came to Uganda to share the love of Jesus with them.
Wednesday, a few people (most of the KS ladies, minus me) went back to Wambwa to finish up the last details, while the rest of us started on the library at Mbale High School. It's a nice big room for the library and the men really were able to work very quickly on the shelves. The great thing about this team is everyone's willingness to help and pitch in wherever needed, so we've been able to complete our work quickly. The students at Mbale High were very happy to see us. We felt like rock stars as they led us around with their friends and had us take pictures with every one of them. They loved us taking their pictures and then they wanted to see them right away on the camera. We got to meet with all of the student body after lunch, outside. It was getting ready to rain, so I kept praying that God will hold off the rain long enough for us to be able to share with the students. I led the kids in a few songs, they introduced the whole team, and then Dave gave a great gospel presentation. A few of us were able to get together beforehand and pray, and I really think that helped to give him just the words to share. The students were attentive and seemed to enjoy it. They loved the giant "Cross Talk" display of the gospel. I pray that some part of the message really touched a few of the students. There were many muslim students at this school, and I just pray that a few of them will look at christianity in a new light. We then split into groups with some passing out gifts in classes and the rest of us went into classes to just meet and answer questions. The class I went into asked many interesting questions. They wanted to know about our engagement process, polygamy, circumcision, elections, crops, construction, music, politics, and that was just a few. I even got asked about why don't I convert to Islam.
Thursday, we worked at Namakwekwe Primary School. This school is very close to our hotel so it was interesting to walk there and take a look at the nieghborhoods, homes, and people. The toddlers wandering around are just adorable. I spend that day out with another lady from our team shopping for the flooring for the three libraries. It was quite an advnture. We went to exchange money, to about 6 different stores, and then bought the wrong size and had to go back and then go deliver all of the carpets. I think we wore out our poor bus driver. That afternoon we passed out gifts and it was fun to share with each class. They kids also sang many songs for us. We also played "net-ball" it's sort of like basketball. I was the "defender" and I almost knocked over the goal. Geez, I'm such an athlete. But it gave the students a good laugh. Then Thursday night we were invited to dinner at the home of a headmaster from the school we worked at last year. He is now a district supervisor. It was very nice. He had a tent set up outside and a big meal. It was a nice time to visit with everyone.
Friday (today) We had our grand opening. It was supposed to start at 10 and it started at 1. You've got to love Ugandan time. It was a very nice ceremony. Then we had a soccer match against the High School we were at last year. I was able to get out of playing, ha! I'm sure I'll be playing later in the trip. This evening, we had a meeting with teachers from all of the Libraries of Love Schools in Mbale. It was a great time to share with them and get to know them. They asked a lot of questions about how our school system works. Then Trudy, and Pastor Wilbur shared, and I even got to speak!
Tomorrow, we will visit Sisisyi Falls. I can't wait. We also will visit where a lady from Austin, TX is having more than 500 wheelchairs put together for people here and we'll also visit a medical clinic.
A few interesting things that have happened... we've eaten lots of "matoke" (national dish of steamed bananas), ox liver, jack fruit (tastes like cantaloupe with a bad aftertaste), goat stew, milk tea, and lots of beans and rice. We feel like we are carbo-loading. We crammed 20 people into a 10 passenger van (that's Ugandan style). My favorite seat is the "perch" in between the driver and passenger seats sitting backwards. Don't tell my girls, no seatbelts are used. :) Outside our windows we see goats, cats, roosters, motorcycles, huge trucks, people cooking over charcoal, laundry lines, and people walking everywhere! I don't even know how to describe the sights and smells.
What an adventure! The rest of the Kansas team sends their love. Everyone is doing well, and they all will hope to email or call you soon (so don't worry moms!, :))
Thanks for your prayers and keep them coming. We're planning for the children's services for Sunday!