Monday, February 14, 2011

From Outhouse to Penthouse

And we're back!

The mountain village is not a very forgiving place. We had a productive 2 weeks there, but it was also 2 weeks of really struggling physically. I have a cold that is moving into my chest and David's intestines are still struggling from life in the "bush." Being in a 3rd world village is difficult when you're at your best, and really tough  miserable when you are sick. However, we really enjoyed seeing all our kiddies again, finishing up our work in the garden, and getting some progress made at the Technology Center. Every day was an adventure and we can't wait to tell you all the stories when we get home. We also have an entire village of kids who walk around constantly singing "bambelela," which is beyond adorable.

Anyways, we had a great 2nd trip to Godeka but our time here in South Africa is quickly coming to a close, and we were itching to see the rest of the country, so we took 1 last (painful) bakkie ride down from the mountains, planning to spend some time in Tabankulu while we figured out our next steps.

Of course, things never go as planned and when we got to the house we stay at in Tabankulu, there were already people there. We have learned that flexibility is the name of the game, so we headed to Kokstad to use the internet and try again. We kicked off the day at Woolworth's and ate an entire chocolate cream cake (2 layers of moist chocolately cake covered in ganahce and filled with cream - AMAZING) for breakfast and then began wandering around the city in search of a place to stay.

To make a long story short, we ended up calling the number on a sign we saw and getting in touch with someone who offered to take us by his bed & breakfast because they had a pool and we were without a car. It turns out that he was with YWAM almost 20 years ago, and after giving us a tour of the amazing resort, he offered to give us 2 free nights of accomodation. He dropped us back off at the internet cafe and then proceeded to give us all the cash in his wallet and told us to be blessed. We still don't really know how to explain the shock and gratitude we have. God is good (...all the time).

So, we have gone from the outhouse to the penthouse. Literally.

Staying at Imbali has been incredible - check out the website for pictures, if you don't believe me. The hotel is run by a really great family, who has been incredibly generous to us, letting us eat meals with them, catering to our every need and even taking us to church with them (and introducing us as their "American friends") on Sunday. We love them so much that we are going to spend a few extra days here, celebrating Valentine's Day in style!

We still don't know our exact plans for the rest of our time in South Africa yet, but will be heading towards Cape Town later this week to hook up with some contacts that we have in the area before leaving on March 3rd. After a whirlwind few days of travel (through J-Burg, Geneva, Burtigny, Zurich, Istanbul, and Philadelphia) , we will end up in Atlanta on the 5th just in time for dinner. Our first meal back in the States is still being hotly debated :)

Pictures from Godeka are being uploaded to Snapfish as we speak, I think there is a link on the left hand side of the blog, so check them out. Happy Valentines Day!

David & Nicole