How Time Flies!!! January 2, 2012
Christmas has come and gone, so has New Years. The weather remains mostly hot, although today it is cooler. For a rainy season, we have not seen that much, although it did rain New Years Eve, but not enough to stop the fireworks. from going on. China still provides the fireworks. At the end of the New Years Eve Dance, the District President provided fireworks (with a little arm twisting for a financial contribution from Elder Shields and the Mission President). The young people and many adults were well entertained (by the fireworks in the Church yard) for more than 30 minutes. Because it had rained hard earlier and during the actual ignition of the fireworks, there was little danger of a fire.
Church services on Christmas Day were abbreviated to one hour. We still covered parts of three Branches and went to the Mission Home for dinner with the senior couples. One couple were away up North (in the Copper Belt) and one new couple, just arrived to do Public Affairs in our Mission and elsewhere, so there were 8 people present. We had been planning to have a New Years Eve dance for the YSA (Young Single Adults), but did not really get the final "go ahead" until December 26 in the afternoon (when we finally had verification of a budget). We had the Youth find a DJ (actually a member) and he turned our to be good. There were three of them with all the usual equipment. If we can get a picture to work, we will post one showing the hall, all set up.
The Mission was instructed not to do anything costly for the missionaries, so they were all invited to the Mission Home Christmas Eve for games and food. Many came dressed in African attire. Christmas day, the missionaries all came back for food and a movie "The Ultimate Gift". We took 4 Elders home afterwards to their flat, located in a very bad road area, which combined with the weight of the 4, caused us to hit bottom a few times, and traversing very deep pools of water in the roadway (normal when it rains).
Sister Shields talked the DJ into finding the music for a Chicken Dance, which was actually well enjoyed, not something they had heard or done before. She even found a rubber chicken as a prize. We had to gather up all the refreshments and get them served to a bunch of very hungry people, who probably had not eaten much for a while. We had at least 100 come, which to us was a great success. We had the usual "wall flowers" and people who really just came to visit and not dance. Our two young MCs, who had never done anything like that before did a great job.
On New Years day, after getting home the night before, well past "missionary curfew" we hit bottom at the Bauleni Group meeting, when only one member showed up. It was raining heavily and they are so poor, they do not have umbrellas. It was another dinner at the Mission Home for Senior couples, that concluded New Years Day. The fireworks went on all night and are still going on today.