Monday, September 3, 2012


We arrived back from Kijabe, Kenya on Sunday the 26th. Another family that also took their son to RVA with us were going to be heading back to their home in Gulu. We have been trying to visit them for over a year, and it just never worked out. Since they were already in Jinja and going to be heading home, we decided it was a good time to follow them up.

Probably at least nine months ago, Hackers for Charity had donated a computer with N-computing installed and three monitors. When our friends, Keith and Lisa Coggin, set it up in the classroom in Gulu it didn't work. Over the months they returned the computer to Jinja and our technician tried to fix it. Long story short... it was finally fixed and we felt like this time we should actually go up for the install.

Having just returned from a day and a half of travel we were glad when Keith decided to stay in Jinja on Monday and just relax. Declan really wasn't crazy about getting in the car again and traveling another seven hours. What a blessing when dear friends of ours offered to have Declan stay with them.

Tuesday we head out, taking dusty back roads.... seeing a cow tied to the back of a boda (motorcycle), that was a first. The country up there is beautiful. Clouds... I like clouds. Up there they were so white, and the sky so blue.

We arrive late Tuesday afternoon. The school is closed for holiday, but the computer classroom is suppose to be ready for set-up. Of course, that was not the case. It seemed like all the workers had decided to take off while Keith and Lisa weren't there. So the computer table that was suppose to be finished wasn't. The carpenter assures Keith that it will be done by 9am the next morning.

Later that evening the carpenter calls back and says he is on the way to the school to bring the table. Yeah... we would get to do set up the following day.
The Nile River

One of the school buildings
More classrooms... open door leads to the computer lab
At this point.... we had to just laugh. The carpenter indeed did bring the table.... but it was in pieces. Not assembled. But that's okay.... now we can tell him to not varnish the top of the table so we don't have to wait for it to become un-sticky. With clear instructions given to the carpenter we head to the huts for the night.

The next morning, Wednesday, Keith goes over to see the table. It is assembled!! However... the clear instructions that were given were not followed. A nice coat of varnish is covering the entire table. When we asked the carpenter why the instructions weren't followed... he says, "oh, but if the rains come the table could get wet on the top and needed to be sealed." Which was a good argument, except for the fact that it was not asked for, and in fact was not wanted. Keith puts a fan on it for the night, and we hope it will be dry by morning.

Thursday.... FINALLY. The table is assembled and dry, we can install the computer classroom. I helped a very little bit, Jon does most of the work.. but by the end of the day it is ready for use.
Keith with the carpenters

Six stations, instead of three. Nice new monitors and deep freeze installed so no one can accidentally erase or mess up the machine.

Johnny making sure everything is working properly.

We are very excited to see how the children take to them. This is will be the first time most of the students will have ever used a computer. Thanks to the donations of supporters we have successfully installed another classroom. Keith and Lisa are also so excited to have a computer lab for their school. I will update with stories when I receive them from Keith and Lisa.

Rift Valley Academy

Last year we put an application for Makenna and Trevor to attend RVA (Rift Valley Academy) in Kijabe, Kenya. Last year they were put on a waiting list and we home-schooled. This year we updated their files at RVA and waited again. On July 27th we received an email from RVA saying the 10th grade class was full for the year, but they would let us know if there were any openings.

(Let me interject here that we have been praying about whether or not to send the kids to a boarding school. We tried home-schooling last year, and although it was okay.. it definitely wasn't/isn't the best option. So, from last year through this year we have been praying that God would show us what we should be doing. That if RVA was where the kids should be that the doors would be opened and we would have a peace about it. We continued to pray, with the kids and without the kids. Receiving the email from RVA saying the class was full was a closed door. We had already sent in a deposit for an accredited home-school program, so we started looking at the courses we should sign up for.)

July 31st. I receive and email from RVA saying that BOTH Trevor and Makenna had been accepted. BOTH. When I received that email, I was blown away. God had opened the door. What was once shut, was now open. My heart flooded with emotions. In awe that the door had been opened... and yet scared because the door had been opened. My babies would be going away. Yet this is what we had been praying for. A clear sign from God. It couldn't get more clear... what had been a no, was now a yes.

The question now was: was I going to trust God that He knew what He was doing. Trust that God had opened this door, was I going to release my kids, to have faith that God knows better than me. My mind knew the right answers, the logic of all the opportunities, all that RVA had to offer.... but oh, my heart. How do you prepare you heart to release your kids.

We had twenty three days to get all the paperwork in order, to get all the supplies the kids would need, etc. TWENTY THREE. That time seemed to fly by. Sure we were anxious, we were scared, sad, on an emotional roller coaster. We all chose to rely on God. He had lead us down this path, He would not forsake us now.

Sept. 23: We leave Jinja for the long ride to Kijabe. Two other families from Jinja and Gulu were also taking their children to RVA for the first time, so we all caravan together. 

Sept. 24: We report to RVA. The next two days is a bunch of meetings for the parents, and some meetings and activities for the new students. RVA even had activities for the younger siblings (Declan had friends there by the first day). We got to sleep in the dorm that Makenna was in. She even slept in her dorm room the first night there, with Trevor and Declan. 

Sept. 25: We get Makenna set up in her dorm and Trevor set up in his dorm. We meet both of their dorm parents. 

The one thing that Jon and I were impressed with most was how much the staff seemed to want to be there. So many of the staff had actually attended RVA as students, and now they were back working there. The spiritual well-being of our kids was their number on priority. To love on the kids. To educate them, of course. Even some of the parents dropping off their kids had attended RVA. It was totally amazing to see and hear all the testimonies of RVA alumni. It seemed like a close knit family, not a boarding school.

We say good-bye to Trevor and Kenna around 3pm and have to head to the place we are staying for the night. Tears are shed. Hugs are given. BUT... we have a peace. A peace we can't explain, but that is definitely there. God has each one of us in His hands. God is in control. Are we all willing to trust in God and His infinite wisdom, or are we going to think we know better.

Thursday, June 28, 2012

Yesterday I could have died

Morbid post I know. Your probably saying, "What the heck?" So, let me fill you in.

Yesterday started like any other day. I get up, shower, get the kids up, go downstairs and see that they are getting breakfast and ready for school. Everything was normal.... until I went to turn on the kitchen sink.

Let me back up for a minute. You might or might not know about the power in Uganda. So let me give you a brief run-down. Our power is, well, unreliable at best. Recently it has gotten much better, as far as being on most the time. A few months ago, it was off more than it was on. So much so, that we had to invest in an inverter and a generator. The inverter will run half our security lights, two wall sockets and just our living room/dining room lights and it only last like six hours. The generator is for the whole house, minus the hot water heaters and will run until it runs out of petrol. The power had gotten that bad. If we didn't have the generator, our food would go bad within a day. On top of the spotty power.... the electric company isn't always consistent in what power they have. Sometimes it is running at 110v. It is suppose to be at 220v. About three months ago, when they turned the power back on they pumped out 250v, which blew most everybody's computers, refrigerators, etc. Needless to say, the local businesses threatened to riot against the electric company unless they straightened out the power issue. Since that time, power has been almost regular.

Back to the story.

Trevor and I were the only ones in the kitchen at the time. Jon was occupied in the bathroom. Kenna was doing something, and Declan was upstairs changing. Trevor says I was looking for the carrot cake, but I have no idea why I would have been turning on the sink. All I remember was that all of a sudden I was yelling/screaming (which I NEVER do)... thinking "why can't I get my hand off this knob", something was really wrong. My brain reacted before it told me I needed to react. I remember pain all over my body. Fear. I remember screaming but not understanding why. I remember Trevor screaming and calling out for Jon to come. I remember him saying, "I don't know what's wrong, but something is wrong with mamma."

The next thing I knew was I was loose. I think I was in shock. (duh) I collapsed to the floor (it wasn't like I lost consciousness... but I just couldn't stand). By this time I was hyperventilating and sobbing and holding my left hand/arm.. in a fetal position on the floor. Kenna was standing there asking, "What am I suppose to do? I don't know what I'm suppose to do." Trevor was getting a little angry because Jon still hadn't come.

Jon got there (it was actually within 30 seconds of the whole thing, but to the kids and to me... it seemed like forever). The kids still didn't really understand what had happened, so he asked. Through my sobs, I told him not to touch the faucet. He knew right away. We have had this problem before, with little shocks that make you jerk your hand back. We had had it fixed. It was nothing like this. My muscles had contracted right away and I physically had a death grip on the faucet. Jon reassured me I was fine now, just breathe, try to breathe with him. In hindsight, it was a good thing he had taken child-birthing classes, it came in handy.

My whole left arm ached, tingled, was numb, up into my shoulder and neck. Which is normal. "When someone is electrocuted, the person might feel paresthesia, which is a tingling, prickling, numbing or sometimes a burning sensation." Also normal was the "hyperventilating"- "Someone having respiratory arrest might look like he or she is having an asthma attack. Look for trouble or cessation of breathing." I was definitely having trouble breathing.

When talking to my dear friend about it later, her first question was, "How did you get off?" With the electricity causing my muscles to contract into the death grip, there is no reason I should have just been able to let go myself. I don't know how I got off. She, and I also, think that an angel pushed me off. With all the reading I have done since then normally a person has to be tackled off.

God was protecting me. From permanent damage, from any lasting effects, from any burn marks, brain damage.....death.

Yesterday my whole arm ached, tingled, was numb... today, it is pretty much back to normal. I thank God that He was protecting me. I thank God it was me and not Declan. Thank you Jesus!

Jon shut the power off for the whole house until the electrician could come. He spent the day going over the wiring for the whole house. Turns out that the leak we have in our bathroom ceiling, which Jon had just reported to the landlord the day before, was leaking significantly in the attic/crawl space. There has been so much rain that there was a lot of standing water up there. Right along with the water pipes and the now exposed electrical wires for the whole house. Because the insulation on the electrical wires was eroded off, and because it is the same wiring from the 50's when the house was built, and because there was standing water.... basically all the water pipes were electrified.

Right now the electrician has the electrical wires lifted out of the standing water, but we are waiting on the go-ahead from the landlord to have them replace all the wires in the attic.

I cannot express enough how amazed I am, how grateful I am to God. This could have been so much worse, and for whatever reason, God had my hand release from that faucet.

I could have died......

Yet. I am alive in Christ!!

Monday, June 18, 2012

Eight is enough

Jon was in the US last week. I was responsible for the care of eight children for a week. Having eight children was... well... more crowded. The kids were all really good, it wasn't like I was constantly breaking up fights or anything... but more mouths to feed, more homework to check, more reminding of showers, teeth brushing, etc. BUT.... I never once heard the, "I'm bored" phrase. Everyone had someone to hang out with, to play with, to dance with.

Remember the t.v. show, "Eight is Enough"? I'm giving away my age by saying I use to watch it all the time. Dick Van Patten was the father... and a bunch of other stars I am failing to remember. There was always some sort of chaos or issue, but it was a good show to watch. Or the Waltons? I don't remember how many kids they had, but I remember them all saying good night to each other... in my house it was, "good night Kenna, good night Janae, good night Shallom, good night Trevor, good night Josh, good night John, good night Declan, good night Josiah. Just saying good night that many times is tiring. :-)

I started the above post more than three days ago. Where was I going with it? No idea. I did decide that I am glad God didn't call me to have eight children full time. I don't have the patience. I truly have a new respect for those whom God has called to have eight or more children. It isn't an easy task, even if all the children are angels.

So, that's it for this post. Maybe I'll have something more enlightening later... or tomorrow.

Thursday, May 10, 2012

Part 2- Monkey

That afternoon when I was home in the living room, I noticed that our guard was outside throwing something up into the tree. I looked out the window and see that he is trying to chase a monkey. We don't have monkey's all that often, but when our trees start producing mango's they manage to come.

So this monkey was up in the tree. I took some pictures from the living room, but then realized that if I went upstairs to our bedroom the monkey would be closer. So I run upstairs to try and get some closer shots. I was right. The monkey was almost at eye level from our window. After taking a few shots, he decides he is camera shy and jumps away onto our roof.

The next thing I hear is some crunching out our front window. I say to Jon, who had walked into the room, that the monkey must be out front. So in all my wisdom I head to the front windows. I can't see anything, so I decide to open our screen window so I can stick my head out to get a better look. Sure enough there is the monkey about 20ft. away in a tree munching on some "bean pods". I lean out to get some better shots. The monkey just looking at me while chewing. After a few more shots, the monkey must have gotten curious at this strange site (me hanging out the window). He starts to move down the branch. I see that he is moving so I decide I better get myself back into the safety of our room. In the time it took me to think that and to start to close the screen.... the monkey was there. I didn't even have it locked before he was right there on the other side of the screen from me.

I screamed. I'm not a screamer, but I screamed. I don't even know what I screamed but Jon came. I guess I thought he would be helpful and help me close the screen, but instead he stands there watching me, chuckling. Here I am thinking that the monkey is going to claw his way through the screen..... I could be attacked.... and Jon is laughing. (I am not thinking it is all that funny at this point.)

I get the screen locked. The monkey is still sitting right there on the other side of the screen. I have never been as close to a monkey.

We call the kids up to come and see. We discover that there are actually two monkeys, not one.

One of them jumps onto the papyrus roof and pulls the palm branch down, uses the branch as a ladder, and scales up the tree.

(the pictures on my computer finally decided to show up, so TODAY I was able to post this.)

Enjoy the pictures. They make for a good story.


I am late in posting this, but I guess late is better than never. (although I think it depends on what is late.)

Two Saturdays ago I had a rather eventful day. To begin with I was at work. That in itself wasn't eventful, at least at this moment I can't think of anything that happened. Around ten o'clock I headed to pick up Kenna and her friend, Victoria, her friend's mom (my friend, Danielle) and another friend to go and spend the day at the pool to celebrate a birthday. To relax at the pool all day, or as long as the girl's were entertained, sounded glorious. Danielle and I have been trying to meet every Saturday at the pool with the kids. The kids to play, but for us to relax in the sun and catch up on things. It has been great.

This time it was to be more relaxing. We didn't have any "smaller" kids with us. We were confident that the girl's weren't going to drowned if we weren't watching them none-stop.

It was a beautiful day. The sun was bright, there was a cool breeze, and some cloud cover... and no one was there.

That, however, changed within an hour of arriving. A Ugandan man with his two small children showed up. The pool has two kiddie pools, one that is only a foot deep and one that is about three feet deep. Wisely the man took his children to the shallower of the two pools. As I was laying on the side of the deeper of the two pools, I watched as he put the kids in. They were both just standing there. One child was about three, the other maybe 18 months. The man was still standing by the side of the pool. I turned my head to talk with Danielle. When I turned my head back the smallest child was face down next to the three year old. I looked to the father.. he was just standing there, calling, "Ssebo." (which means sir), but very calmly. It didn't click in my head that something was wrong. The ssebo, which turned out to be the "lifeguard" (I use that term loosely, as they really don't watch the pools like lifeguard in the US do), stepped into the pool and grabbed the child. Of course, by then the child came up sputtering. Actually at first she made no noise, then started sputtering. In hind sight I should have just jumped up and ran over to make sure, but I didn't because the father was not three feet away and wasn't panicked. Eventually the child started to cry, but that was a good sign. Gosh... so much for relaxing.

I now felt like I had a duty to keep my eye on her. I was not about to have a child drown while I was there.

Not long after that incident our food came. So we moved closer to the steps of the three foot pool. By then another family had come, they had three small children. This family however, had both the mom and the dad watching and playing with their kids in the pool. They even brought some large blow-up toys, an alligator, a lounge chair and some smaller things. As they were playing in that pool, with all the pool toys there, the 18 month old wandered over. The father, he was busy talking with another man and drinking a beer.

Danielle and I both watched as the little girl got closer and closer to the steps. Still no notice from the father. Even the other children and the father that was with them didn't seem to notice her approaching. I think it was within seconds of me saying to Danielle, "She is going to keep on walking off the steps and go under.", that sure enough she toddled her way onto and down the steps within seconds. As soon as she took that last step that made her go under.... I shot up and out of my chair, wrap and all and jumped in after her. Grabbed her, almost slipping under with her..

I think the only one who realized what was going on was Danielle. Kenna told me later that she was wondering why I had suddenly decided to jump in the water, I never go swimming to swim. The father of the other children was not two feet away but because of all the pool toys, didn't notice the child go under. The little girl's father hadn't even realized his daughter went under until I had walked out of the pool with his daughter and was heading his way. Of course, he said, "Thank you , thank you."

I felt like smacking him. He had already witnessed his child almost drowning without him jumping in to save her, why in the world did he let her out of his sight? It was later that I realized, or thought to myself, that the reason he probably didn't jump in after his child, was because he, himself probably didn't know how to swim and was therefore terrified of the water.

Moral of that story... at least here, when I go to the pool, regardless of whom I have with me.. I will always have to be on my guard, because it would be absolutely terrible if a child drowned while I was around.

I think part 2 of my day will be in another post. Somehow, talking about my late afternoon after relaying the story of the near drowning doesn't seem to flow. So although the title is "monkey" that will be in part 2.

Monday, April 23, 2012


Trevor and Makenna attended their friend, Ethan's, high school graduation formal banquet this past Sunday. Since this was the kids first formal, (and possibly their only formal) I decided that while we were in America I would go and find them some nice things. I wanted it to be something special. Sure there is the local market where we could have gone for some formal wear. It is, however, hot in market, dresses are hand-me-downs (with no changing room or area). I opted for the more convenient way of buying... and the somehow, more special way.... taking Makenna to the mall. Of course, I didn't realize, or didn't think it would turn into hours on three separate occasions. It was an adventure in patience, perseverance and enjoyment. In each dress that Makenna tried on, she was absolutely beautiful. My baby girl.... all dressed up. It was a sad time also....where had my baby gone.

After trying on what seemed like a million and one dresses, Kenna finally decided on one. She looked stunning in it. She also decided that she wanted to accessorize too. So we head to the accessory store. She finds long black gloves (very elegant and classy), some hair twisty thingys that sparkle.

After much debate about the types of shoes that should be worn with a formal dress, we come to a compromise on dress flats. So we head to yet another store to look for shoes. Luckily we find some at the first store.

As I write this, Trevor is sitting over my shoulder commenting on everything I am writing. He would like you all to know that he had to trail behind us the whole time. :-)

Now Trevor was easier to buy for.... sort of. Trying to buy him pants that fit has become a challenge. I measure his waist, find pants or shorts that have that measurement, bring them home, only for him to tell me they are to tight or too loose. So I only buy pants when he is present, which in Uganda is NEVER. At least while we were in America he liked going to the mall, so I could grab him and drag him into a store to look for the things he would need to be semi-formal. I decide against buying a whole suit, as he would never wear it again in Uganda with the heat. So we look for a nice pair of dress pants, a shirt and tie. It was pretty painless... after finding the right size, which only took two tries, we are done. Finding a tie was just as easy. He finds one within minutes. I think this was because he really didn't want to be shopping for the stuff, so he figured that the quicker he picked something, the quicker he could be done.

Sunday comes. Kenna wants her hair fixed a certain way. No pressure on me. She is pretty particular on how her hair has to be, and since I only have an hour to fix it without it being "puffy" or "sticky-outy".... I am sweating slightly.When Kenna walks down our steps with her hair fixed, her dress on, her gloves and shoes, and necklace...... looking totally glamorous... it is all worth it.Trevor has Jon teach him or show him how to tie a tie. The pictures say it all. :-)

Look at my grown up children... they are no longer children, but a young lady and a young man. (insert tears here). I am honored and blessed to have the opportunity to raise these two. I hope I am not screwing them up too badly, and that despite my failings that they will become individuals who love God above all and are people of integrity.Enjoy the pictures!!
-Makenna and Trevor
-Makenna, Trevor and Sarah
-Kiira and Makenna
- all the girls/ladies
- all the boys/gentlemen
- the whole group. Ethan is in the middle
- Ethan and Makenna

Sunday, April 22, 2012

I'm Back!

I just returned from our trip to good ol' America... well, this last Thursday. I am still feeling the effects of jet-lag. Today I had set my alarm for church. When it went off... I turned it off and went right back to sleep until 10:53. I never sleep that late. I am hoping that I have caught up on my sleep now and will be back in the swing of things tomorrow.

Being back in the US was good. Interesting but good. I got to see family and friends I haven't seen in over two years. Did I mention it has been two years since I have been in Maryland? It was great to spend time with my mom, my dad and step-mom, my brother and uncle. Not having family around is really hard at times. My uncle and brother took the boys to their first major league baseball game. Although, Trevor nearly got arrested when a police officer inside the stadium saw he had a pocket knife looped on his pants. (How he got it past security in the first place, I don't know.... and since Trevor is use to wearing it all the time in Uganda.. thought nothing of it being on his pants.) My uncle had to take the knife outside the stadium.. hid it under some stuff to retrieve later. Makes for a good story.

Jon and I were able to meet Makenna in Branson, Missouri to go to the Titanic Museum. After Makenna missed her flight on Friday, proceeded to scare my mom half to death (well, actually closer to death than half) because after two hours of looking in the airport for her, she was convinced that someone had kidnapped her. Only a minor mis-communication, as we had told the Airtran employee we had talked to to tell Kenna to go back out by departures where her grandmother had dropped her off, but instead he told Kenna to go to arrivals. So Kenna was sitting out in the low 40's waiting for grandmom... while grandmom was inside the airport frantically searching and paging and calling the police. Kenna finally made it to Branson. We all went to the museum and wandered around Branson, before heading back to MD for the flight home.

The kids got to go to the mall... malls... several times. They were able to eat at Dunkin Donuts, Hoffmans, Carraba's, Twin Kiss, McDonald's, Lotte, Subway, Frank's, Auntie Ann's, Burger King (think that is it). Sounds like all they did was eat. But they had made a list of things they wanted to do/eat while in the US. I think we accomplished most of them. I can't say I missed all the processed foods that are so prevalent in the US. Of course, if I had actually cooked while I was there it wouldn't have been an issue. I am glad the kids were able to OVER-indulge, even if it was only for three weeks.

We were able to go to a park the kids loved to go to. Took some pictures there. Gosh, they have all grown so much. Grandpa and Nana came down for a week and were a tremendous blessing helping me go through our storage things. They also took us to the Maryland Science Center. That was a lot of fun.. and we learned some stuff at the same time.

Anyhow... our time there was good. We are back home in Uganda now. I was looking forward to the warmer weather here, but it is now rainy season and the weather is "cold". (as I write this I am in long pants and sweatshirt... and my feet are freezing).

Sunday, March 18, 2012


I have been silent for some time. I have to say I actually forgot I had a blog. Life has just been so busy lately that the blog was never in my mind. Now that I have remembered I have a blog, I sit here and struggle with what to write.

I think the problem is that I have been reading others' blogs and now I wonder what in the world I have to say that would interest anyone. Whether I have words of encouragement, or happiness, or deep thought...

I did start writing a post two days ago, but it is still sitting in my drafts. Relaying what has been going on in my life this past month, is a hard task. Words just aren't seeming to do it justice. Pictures would only give half the story. The intense feelings of the last few weeks, the complete exhaustion from long day's of manual labor; how do I express all of that in words. Maybe because I just feel drained. Emotionally. Physically. And even spiritually. So how do you find eloquent words to convey that? The answers is: I don't. And there lies the problem of why there have been no posts.

I will attempt to write tomorrow. For tomorrow is another day.

Tuesday, February 7, 2012


The temperature here has been in the upper 90's for a few weeks now. With that said, how in the world did I manage to get a cold/flu? I think it had something to do with Jon being out of country for a week, our manager at the Keep being gone during that same week and the lack of sleep. By the time the manager came back last Monday, I was wiped out. Having to be up every morning, which I already do, to get the kids up and ready for school, open the Keep, be at the Keep as cashier and the million other things I had to take care of, checking on the kids, making sure homework was finished, making sure the training center was running and then closing the Keep.... not to mention the inability of me to sleep... whew.. I guess I know now why I am sick.

I need to be thankful, even though it sounds like I am complaining. I hardly ever get sick and I haven't had malaria.

A quick post... but not much else to say. :-)

Thursday, January 5, 2012

A New Year

2011 is over.. 2012 is already five days old.

In church on Sunday one of the pastors reminded us that with the new year comes a fresh start. The old has past, the new is yet to come. For some reason I needed to hear that. 2011 wasn't a very good year. I hope and pray that 2012 is much better.

To catch you up on some things that have been going on.

Our puppies all got sold. The last one, and actually the one we had decided to keep, was just sold to our good friend, Ryan. The last puppy, whom we called puppy or midgey, is such a sweet little thing. She was one of the puppies who got really sick, but I was able to nurse back to health. If anybody else had asked for her, the answer would have been "no". With Ryan it is different. Ryan moved up north a few months ago. He lives an hour and a half from any other mzungu, white person. He goes out to villages to share Christ with those who haven't ever heard. Puppy is going to be a good companion for him. Like I told Ryan the day before he left and took puppy... I can so see him in ten years, wandering the bush... with puppy by his side. So, although I am sad she is gone... she couldn't have gone to a better chose.

There is a new restaurant in town called Skewers. Kabobs. Naan. We decided that we would go and try it out. Trevor and Ryan had already gone and given it a good report. So on Saturday the whole family headed there for a late lunch. We decided to sit outside, just because it is nicer to sit outside, although the view is just of the street.

As we are sitting there waiting for our sodas... one of the town's "crazy" guys was walking by. Now to help you understand. Jinja doesn't have the facilities for mentally challenged people. So there are several men and women that just wander the streets. You can pick them out of the crowd, as they are the ones who have tattered reddish-brown clothes. Some have less clothes than others. Matted hair. No shoes. You get the picture. Since this is Uganda, one never knows the real reason for why these people have become the way they are. Cerebral malaria. Demon possession. Both very real reasons.

Okay, back to the story.

This particular mulaloo, crazy person, I call "Pantless Joe". He tends to have a VERY tattered pair of pants or shorts on, that never seems to have a button or zipper. He walks around bunched in his hand, holding them up. (yes, I have had other run-ins with him... one which he forgot his hand was holding his pants up... and no... there was no underwear.) Why I named him Pantless Joe.

So, Pantless Joe tripped off the curb right by us and a security guard that was next door laughed at him. Pantless Joe got irritated. Started waving his arms around, with chunks of something flying off. He then went in front of our truck. Picked up a good sized slab of concrete and threw it, luckily, across the street from where we were sitting. This made the security guard and others laugh once again. As Pantless Joe came around to the back of our truck, I remember saying to the kids... "Don't look at him. Don't look at him." I think I must have good protective instincts. No sooner had I said it the second time, when Trevor turned his head towards where Pantless Joe was. Big mistake.

Pantless Joe leaned over to the roadside, where he had put a bag of something. Picked it up and hurled it at us.

Kenna and Jon had their backs to Pantless Joe. The bag went between them and headed straight for Declan and I who were facing towards Pantless Joe and the street. Somehow, thank you Lord, the bag missed both of our heads, but went smashing into the huge window directly behind us. On impact with the window the bag basically exploded with the contents of the bag shooting everywhere. I stood up immediately, grabbed Declan and told the kids to get inside. I had the contents running down my face. Running down my dress. On the back of my dress. Declan had it all down the back of his shirt. The contents of the bag. Luckily it was some sort of left over food. Curry. Potatoes. Peas. Sauce. Slimy. Smelly. Did I mention it was dripping down the front of my dress and down the side of my face?!

The staff all came over to us, and in typical Ugandan style all started saying, "Sorry, sorry, sorry." When I asked for some napkins to try and wipe myself off... they brought napkins out, but then proceeded to wipe my face for me.

Jon and the owner of the restaurant jumped on Jon's motorcycle to follow Pantless and to go and make a report at the police station. When the policeman tried to apprehend Pantless, he took off down the street.

Needless to say we were very fortunate that there was only a bag full of food, not a rock, not a bottle. Fortunate it missed hitting us directly. Thank you Lord for protecting us.

I didn't say it before, so.. Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year to all of you!