Tuesday, December 18, 2007

Hogsback at its finest

This a picture of kids enjoying a break after a short hike to swallow tail waterfall. It was great to give these kids a piece of my joy; that being the outdoors.

UNO the international card game

This is Dom and I playing UNO with a couple of kiddos on break.


This is my group of kiddos at Hobbiton doing a group dynamics exercise.

Blessed by Steve

Picture of Jesse and I being blessed by newly ordained Steve.

Ordination of Steve in Clerksdorp


Bulungula is amazing backpackers on the Wild Coast. 40% is owned by locals, and the locals do tours, cook etc. It has a very chill vibe. Most electricity is solar power. We went canoeing, and swimming and sun burning.

Back from travels

I just returned from a two week run of travels. School ended on the 28th of November. I moved out of my apartment and into a new one on the 29th, then visited a friend in Umtata 4 hours north where we spent the weekend on the beach at Bulungula on the wild coast. Amongst the highlights was the unfortunate sunburn of Megan who fell asleep in the sun, canoeing up an inlet, and being offered sexual services by a local for 8 rand. I quickly declined the offer.

Following the weekend retreat I volunteered at itipini the place where Jesse works (another volunteer also going to Uganda). Working at the clinic was very moving. The living conditions of folks there is astounding. The health of the dogs was the most worrying, while the people seemed somewhat healthy, the dogs were skin and bones with hair missing. They were almost like large rats. I attended a funeral of a missionary in Umtata. While I did not know the man, I was very inspired by his work and love for his patients and drive and passion to see god's work done. The man was a spinal surgeon, and a professor at the local university and father, and helped start and run the aids clinic I helped at.

From Umtata I went with Jesse and Megan to Klerksdorp. This was a 11 hour drive that we broke up into two days there and drove the whole way back. Another volunteer and friend Stephen was being ordained a priest, a culmination of 7 some odd years of university and seminary. It was great to be a part of his big day.

We then drove back to hogsback a mountainous region of the eastern cape where I helped as an instructor at a camp "Hobbiton". Hogsback is where J.R.R. tolkien got many ideas for his setting of Lord of the Rings. I spent 4 days with kiddos from the grahamstown shelter. What an amazing opportunity to get kids out of their environment to see new possibilities.

I will post pictures when the computer is less funky. I will spend the rest of my week in Grahamstown then head for Uganda from December 28th to the 10th of January.