Tuesday, August 25, 2009

First day of school


I had my first full day of school today! My kids are cute and I only have 18! I have one Korean student who does not speak a word of English. That will be a challenge. I have another student from Lebanon that hasn't spoken to me yet. I don't think she speaks English very well either. I found out yesterday that I don't have an assistant in my class and was a little stressed out today. I was so nervous! You have to plan way ahead here because the power goes out all the time. I had to meet all of my parents with wet hair and make up I did in the dark because the power was out from 9PM-9AM. That means you have to make copies early for when the power goes out expectantly. I also still can't drive on the scary roads so its hard to get supplies I will need for later.

I wish you all could hear the Malawians worship. It is so joyful! The don't sing like Americans they SING! It is beautiful. In a village church on Sunday, the kids sang, then the teens, then the women sang lots of songs while moving and dancing. They use their entire voice and are not shy about it. Malawians are one of the shyer African countries but you can't tell when they worship! I think that's what heaven sounds like. I only wish I knew what they were saying!

My new friend Owen says he'll teach me cultural things like Zimbabwe cloth paintings. He is also going to teach me how to make Nsima. He is basically my tour guide. He drives me around because I A) can't, B) am too scared. The college students just started school this week as well and I have been meeting lots of them. I hope to make some close Malawian friends.

Sorry this is boring. Pictures to come!


Wednesday, August 19, 2009


I have my mailing address now for anyone who is interested. I meant to post it earlier but kept forgetting. Be careful sending anything too valuable over here. If there is something that looks appealing to someone delivering a package they might take it for themselves. Its kinda like every man for himself around here. Anyway, here it is:

African Bible College
P.O. Box 1028,
Lilongwe, Malawi

A good way to get something to me is to send it to the home office and when someone comes over they can bring it with them. Many people come and go throughout the year so we use them as our delivery men. That address is:

African Bible Colleges
5343 Clinton Blvd.
Jackson, MS 39209

If you remember, pray for me to get all of my classroom work done. We've had orientation everyday this week and it doesn't leave me much classroom time. It is a mess right now and I haven't even begun to look at what I'll be teaching yet.
The missionaries here go to bed early and wake up early. They'll be in bed by 8PM and up by 5! I'm learning quickly that sleep is hard to get if you don't plan it well. I'm exhausted. The sun comes up around 6AM and sets before 6PM. That leaves me a very short day to get work done before its dark and unsafe to walk around outside. All of the lights in my room and bathroom have burnt out as well so I have been lighting candles;-)
Pray for my worrying tendancy to subside and remember that God commands us not to worry about anything but to pray about everything.

Tuesday, August 18, 2009

I went to the Crisis Nursery down the street from the school a couple of days ago. There were 4 Malawian workers and 18 babies who couldn't walk yet. The kids are all orphans and babies that parents can't/wont take care of until they get older and are off formula. They were so cute and all despirate for attention! I want to go back everyday but my schedule right now doesn't allow it! I will post pictures of these precious babies as soon as I can.
Today we went to the market to shop for groceries and a chitenje which is a wrap the Malawian woman wear as a skirt, headdress, or baby carrier for their back. Malawians don't like when white people come in and take pictures of their poverty. As I walked through the tight, crowded market I held my camera at my side and tried to snap some pictures. Most of them came out blurred or of the ground but I got a couple of good ones. I wanted to show you all what the city looks like and how people make their livings.

This is a street in Lilongwe. People walk in it until a car comes right behind them and honks. A mini bus zoomed right past me and was about an inch away and I yelled and lost my breath! My life flashed before my eyes.

There are lots of people and kids along side the roads selling fruit and veggies. This little boy was so cute I had to get a picture of him!These ladies were so nice to use when we hardly knew any Chichewa. The Malawians speak Chichewa unless you can't understand them. Then they'll try to communicate to you. I thought I could get by only knowing English but I'm definitely going to try to learn the language. It sounds cool!

This is Usipa. They dried these little fishies and eat them like a snack. The fish market smelled horrible and flies went up my nose. You lose your will to shop for food once you come in because you want to throw up.

Women selling fruits and veggies

I really want to carry stuff on my head like this!!! Women carry everything on their heads! Suitcases, boxes, fruit, fabric,...

This is a witch doctor. I was with a Malawian girl from the college and she brought us right up to him to talk. He offered medicine but we didn't want to buy any so he got mad and told us to go. Honestly, the medicine looked like something I could have dug up from the ground for free, but what do I know. I was too scared to take a closer picture.

This is a bad pictures of the narrow paths through the market vendors. I'll put up more pics later.

It is very interesting trying to understand the Malawian culture. Many things they do in the bush are still a secret. Sometimes the Malawians at the college will write about traditional practices in their papers they turn into their professors and we get to hear about them. Most would be unheard of in America. I can write about some of those later too.

Friday, August 14, 2009

Shifty Sticks

I just wanted to write about my experience driving a stick shift car today. We called it stick shifting. Basically when my roommate and I were finished driving it around campus it smelled gross and the Malawians who were doing construction were very confused. I felt like a rich snob when a Malawian girl asked why we couldn't drive. I told her it was because we only know how to drive an automatic. She said "oh, Americans" and walked off. The only car we have available to drive is a stick shift so we have to learn now.
I know its random and you might not think it has anything to do with Malawi and what I'm here for, but, to me it is just another thing that is different from what I'm used to. I've been taken out of my comfort zone in so many ways. I rely on comfort all the time to get me through every day. I like to eat my favorite foods, be with my family and friends, drive my car, go to my church, and just do what I know I can do. Well, all of this is changing and I am excited. I know it will stretch me. I'm hoping that since I have nothing familiar to lean on I'll lean on God. I like to depend on my own efforts to get me through but now I'm thrown into a new country, new job, new responsabilities, and new people and cannot rely on myself to get me through. Anyway, thats just my life lesson for the day.
Tomorrow I'll be visiting the Crisis Nursery located 2 minutes away from campus. Even though I'm crazy busy and not anywhere near to finishing my classroom, I want to get off campus and try to get involved in the city of Lilongwe.
God bless!
Thanks for your prayers! I appreciate them so much!!!

Thursday, August 13, 2009

New beginning

I'm here!

The flight was long and hard but I finally made it! I was relieved when I got off my last plane and the Chinchen family (my host family) was shouting my name. Their daughter Bess will be in my class so that is exciting! Everyone has been really nice and welcoming and have made the whole process of coming to a third world country a somewhat comfortable one.

I have a huge house on the school campus! It has 4 bedrooms and 3 bathrooms. I have the most space to myself that I've ever had. It is all dirty and bare right now though and I don't have much time to clean it up. I spent yesterday shopping for food and all day today working on my classroom. Shopping is an experience let me tell ya. We went to 2 stores and the market to buy groceries. They have more then I thought they would but they say it is expensive. I can't really tell yet because $1500 sounds like a lot to me but apparently is pretty cheap haha. I'm hoping I will get used to it soon so I can barter like everyone else. If you don't, they will sell you something for way more then its worth.

Something that is interesting is that there are a lot of animals on the campus. I'll be walking down the sidewalk and a deer will come up to me. It is another missionaries pet. There are also lots of dogs, roosters, turkeys, pet rats, and pigs. There are also lots of kids on campus and look like that have so much fun all the time!

Anyway, as for working, I went to my classroom today and worked on it for 8 hours. I feel like I have hardly even started yet. I'm nervous for school to start and could use some prayer in that area! It is nice being down the street from the school so I can work on my classroom anytime.

Tomorrow will be exciting because I have to learn to drive a stick shift! There are 3 cars the missionaries share if they dont have one and they are all stick.

And no, sadly I have not seen a giraffe yet. I will let you know when I do.
My roommate and I are looking into other ministries in the city of Lilongwe with an orphanage. There are so many we just need to pick one.
Ok, thats a little bit of whats going on here. I'll put pictures up when I take them