Friday

Trip Start Sep 11, 2010
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Trip End Oct 06, 2010


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Friday, October 1, 2010

After the Last Great Day it usually takes about an entire day to take camp down and get everyone on their way home. Two years ago when we were here this was a major operation that was patiently overseen by Kambani Banda. 

There are a few differences this year, however.  First, the people are not loaded on trucks as was the case two years ago and literally dropped off back where they live.  This year there are three chartered busses that take the people home.  Two years ago Bev and I felt that it was inhumane to transport people like this and steps were taken to charter busses to bring them to the Feast and take them back home. 

A bus that had a seating capacity took on 75 people (however, many were children).  But, this was much better than what we had the last time we were here

We are so pleased to see the development of this property.  Two years ago I had wondered with Andre van Belkum if we had bit off more than we could chew on.  Time has proven that this property has been the right decision for this area where it was so expensive to rent places that were substandard for so large a group.  Seeing the building of four "oblations blocks" as they call them (which are shower and toilet facilities). 

We hear about a petrol shortage and since we are planning to travel into the interior of Zambia Sunday and Monday, we want to be certain to have plenty of petrol for our journey.  Kambani tells us of a known supply of fuel in the next community east of the Festival site called Chongwe.  Joe takes Bev and me out there  We fill our gas tank and external tanks. The cost:  1 million 56 thousand Zambian kwachas.  $216. 

His Dad also sent him to settle up the power bill at Escom, the electric company.  After asking around we found the office for the electric company.  Joe was gone for a little while.  When he returned to the car, he said that they had not yet created an account for electricity usage at the Festival site.  Hmmm… what does that mean?  We did not inquire further.

In the afternoon we went back to Banda home who live in the Avondale district of Lusaka.  The Bandas, the airport and the festival site are in rather close proximity. 

In the afternoon some Festival goers to Zimabwe dropped by including Teresa, the niece of Shirley.  Also Harris and Lizzie Hlazo.  Harris is a UCG member from Harare.  Also, their daughter was present with them. 

We took it easy on the Banda property.  We really love being here and really relax.  One big difference from the trip two years ago to this one has been our email connectivity. Through our Blackberry we have had great conections to the world.  I have not even bothered to try to connect the laptop to the Internet.  You can waste a lot of time (and money) trying to connect….or have to run around to Internet cafes to connect.  Our Blackberry/Verizon Global service has been fantastic and cheap. 

Tine came home from work. She works for a Lusaka law firm and lives here on the Banda estate.  She is building a home in the back of the property. 

We had a nice dinner at the Bandas with James, Loveness and Harris Luwanja also there with Teresa.  We had a fun evening of food, talk and loving laughter.
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