The heavens opened last night as we experienced our first thunder storm of the season. It was incredible but had my mind wandering…should we have put the car in the garage? What if the tree falls down? Did we close the living room windows? Are all electrical appliances unplugged? I love the drama of a storm and we woke up this morning to that fresh feeling you get after one. As is usual with storms in Africa, the day after one is usually a scorcher. Today was no exception. We have kind of trudged our way through the different activities arriving at the evening in a pool of sweat. It has been hot.
The last couple of days have been based at home, mainly office bound…my makeshift one, propped up on my bed, as close to the wall as I can get so as to connect to the internet that is working in the room next door. It has been a day of administration and I think we feel quite accomplished.
We did manage to fit in two visits to old friends, one of whom had just lost their father and as is customary we went to express our condolences for their loss.
The second visit reminded us of the value of relationship and how it lives even when life distracts or overtakes. Regardless of events or circumstances, or things that just happen there are relationships that are simply woven into the structure and fabric of life. For many years these friends and their ‘oh so familiar’ home, were everything to us. There are grainy photographs from over 20 years back that remind us of the fun, friendship and laughter found there. Our videos show snapshots of the hours and hours of dirt encrusted, sun-kissed, adventures our children enjoyed there as they grew up. Then as is usual over a quarter of a century, life happens, change happens, landscapes shift. For many years that place, those times have been just a memory.
Today we stepped back, and how glad we are that we did. There is now another generation of children playing in the same yard, grandchildren we had never met until now. However, as we sat together around the same table that had been so foundational in our experience of Zambia, we were reminded that while everything changes, in a very real way nothing changes.
We are very different people than when we first crossed that threshold, and there is so much of our life that has been lived since we were last there. But one thing is sure, we wouldn’t be where we are today, and we wouldn’t be who we are today without that place and those people.
We left feeling sad but not grieved. Good and poignant memories, and a confidence that one day when all this is past, it really will be only our relationships that remain and define our time on earth.
Many of you will know one of our long-term visions has been to construct a multi-room home for destitute elderly people, to give them freedom and dignity in the last years of their lives. The building programme is moving at pace and it was great to visit on the day of our arrival.
For a long time, we have been thinking about a name for the house, something that summed up what it was all about. Tonight, as we wrote this blog, we started thinking about it again, and spoke out the name ‘Traveller’s Rest’. We both like it as a concept and quickly designed the logo attached to the blog. It is not a decision, but we would love to get feedback – what do people think of it as a name, as an idea?
Thanks for reading our blogs. We enjoy writing them, and enjoy the interaction and response. Only a week left now, so little time, so much to do, so much to blog. Same time, same place, tomorrow.