Thursday, November 26, 2009

Thursday, November 26, 2009

We are busy, busy, busy, but I guess that is good. I just wanted to tell you about a couple of things that make us smile (well actually frustrate us but better to laugh about it than cry or get mad!!)

We need ZESA (Zimbabwe Electricity Supply Assoc) to run the power to the grinding mill building at the school. We took the ZESA employee out to the building so he could give us a list of items we need to buy. WE have managed to acquire all the items but that was a nightmare itself as we had to go to different shops in the busiest part of downtown and they all quote different prices (especially when they see a white face that might have money). One item was a 3 phase breaker box and one place wanted $120 and came down to $90 --- however, we got it somewhere else for $48. Anyway, we went to ZESA this morning as we need a quote in writing for the hook-up and we need to pay them ahead of time, of course. We have to go back on Monday, pick up the quote, take it 'downtown' and pay for it, and then take the receipt back to the ZESA building (in the other end of the city) to prove we have paid. Then... if we want the
work done anytime soon, we need to go pick up 3 ZESA employees and take them out to the job site and wait while they do the job. If we don't drive them out then we would wait indefinitely for them to go because they have no diesel for their own vehicles. We have to buy all the electrical supplies for the job and after the job is complete everything then belongs to ZESA. That will be the case with the transformers we are buying for the clinics too!! Crazy!!!

Traffic Jam.
The picture doesn't do this justice. It was absolutely crazy driving there today (downtown Harare). It is actually crazy all the time in this area but we had no choice today. We had to buy some electrical supplies for the grinding mill. One place tried to charge us $120 for one thing and we got it elsewhere for $48.

Panel Beaters means Vehicle Body Shop

Combies -- these guys hang out and yell and whistle to let people know where they are going.

OH YES! Some good news!! We just got an email that our 3 projects that went to the area presidency yesterday got approved. (2 clinic projects for transformers and to fix the boreholes, and the project to repair the 3 boreholes, and service 1 borehole near Chegutu). Hurray!!

The other thing I wanted to write about is a letter of request I got last week. These people live out in the rural area near our '4' borehole project. They live close to one of the boreholes and the husband is going to be trained to maintain the pump and will be on the water committee. That is how we met them. This is what is says: (exactly as written)

Dear Madam,
I wrote this letter to you. I face a problem on 3 August my young daughter burn someone's huts and a car so they ask me to pay their property, seven tones of maize and to repair their car and built their huts. I have managed to give him two tones of maize and five hens, four blankets, seven cups, 2 pots, 12 plant, one teapot and two buckets. As from now I still build their huts that's why you can see my house is not yet finished because the bricks and the grass which is suppose to build and thatch my house is going to build and to thatch their house. This is the problem I am facing so I don't have anything to do with this problem that's why I am asking for a help from you.

Yours faithfully, Mrs. Chimarizeni

I am not sure exactly what she wants from me but.... We get a LOT of letters of request but this one was kind of unique. There really isn't anything we can do to help her.

Another interesting couple of things that have appeared with the rainy season --- the termites come out of their holes and have wings. They are everywhere and they are gross (at least to me). When we went out into the rurals yesterday our windshield was plastered with them and we
washed it off before we returned home. (with some water and a broom we have in the truck). It made the window quite streaky. We tried to polish it up with some toilet paper we had and that helped a bit. I guess it really needed some soapy water and a rag which we will have to put in the truck for a month or two until they are gone. The other thing that comes with the rains are a LOT of black millipedes. They are big too - about 3 - 4 inches long and gross looking!! I wouldn't want to step on one and slip!!!

How do you like this road grater?

Gave this family suckers.
Stopped and ask directions as we were kind of lost trying to find a school out in the rural area. At least they knew where it was and helped us on our way.

We are headed to Mutare tomorrow morning to arrange for the motor for the grinding mill there. Saturday we will talk at the YSA conference on dating and marriage. We found some good information that E/S Taylor left in their files so that helped us a lot. Saturday morning
Elder Bullock (maybe me too) and Pres. Chadambuka have to do an audit at a branch there where there is a question about some possible missing money. We hope we can find it so that there won't need to be a disciplinary council.

We will attend meetings on Sunday and then head back to Harare. We have a busy December developing already. We were considering a trip to Zambia to look at a garden project there that we have received requests for but we have decided to wait as we cannot work the trip into our timetable right now without totally stressing ourselves out.

We received the following invitation today from Danangwe Primary School (where we are repairing borehole) near Chegutu:

Dear Elder and Sister Bullock
Danangwe Primary school will be having a prize giving day on Dec. 1st. We cordially invite you to this important day. Sister Bullock is being requested to be the guest of honor. I hope you will appreciate our invitation. (That means I have to speak for 10 minutes - Ugh!) I'm not sure why I am the guest of honor except that I did give them all those school kits.

The school head said that they ask the kids who they should invite and they all said, Elder Bullock, so he can teach us how to whistle. (He should be the guest of honor!!)

We are working on one and hopefully two more projects that we want to send in this next week (both to do with grinding mills).

Must run. Love to all, Elder and Sister Bullock

1 comment:

  1. oh I am sure you will do a FNE speech there guest of honor. ; D