Wednesday, 3 October 2018

Update from Uganda

When we were returning to Uganda after Furlough 2018,  I wondered if we would have any visitors this year.  There was no one planning on coming out to visit and and so we decided to move Eilidh out of her bed which was "the guest bedroom" and let Abi have the room.    I just happened to get talking to another leader at Soul Survivor, Lendrick Muir in July.   His son Lewis, was volunteering in Uganda and would be coming soon to Kampala.  Within a few weeks of arriving back in Uganda we had our first surprise guest. Lewis stayed a week and we  had a great time what it was like to study medicine.  Abi was particularly interested - who knows where that might lead!   Lewis volunteered in Mulago hospital and we also managed to squeeze him on a MAF flight.
Saying goodbye to
  Soon after Lewis left, I received an email from a Scottish family who were volunteering in Uganda for a year with the Kitega centre  a few hours on the bus from our house.  They had been in the country a few months and have three children similar ages to ours.  Someone had passed on our email and so we hosted the Ramsay family for a weekend.  The children had been eating local food for a few months and were even attending a local Ugandan school for a few days a week. and homeschooled the rest.  They were delighted to meet other Scottish children and get their fix of "British style" food and plenty of raspberry jam :0).  Having never met the Ramsay family before it was great to build new friendships with them and they have already been back again for another weekend since.  We hope to go on holiday for a few days outside Kampala in the October holiday's together.  We hosted two other families with three children and I am blown away when I think about how I wondered if we would have any visitors this year! It has been so nice to meet so many new people in the last few months and provide a meal or accommodation.  I have always wanted our house here in Uganda to be a place people can rest up,  get refreshed and continue the amazing work so many of them are doing all over Africa. In these last months God has provided a friend or at least a new pen pal for each of our children as well as us.
Fun with the Ramsay family from Stonehouse

Work at Rainbow School started again for me late August.  I am settling back in well and am so pleased to now be four days a week. All is well after the surgery in March however I notice I am more easily tired at the moment.  After two days of work I can barely keep awake so a Wednesday at home is a welcome gap in the week.  This is the first time in 11 years I actually have a regular day off at home with no children (till 3pm!).  I also turned 39 in September - hanging onto my thirties by a thread now.  Andy turned 41 yesterday and unfortunately was a little under the weather. He is on the mend now. 

Abigail just had a school outdoor learning trip for three days to a tribal cultural centre with the rest of her year group.  She managed to put our tent up and take it down by herself and had a super time learning how they make pottery, beer with bananas and other traditional practices.  This year school seems to be going much better and she has developed a good friendship with an Indian girl whose little brother is also in Matthew's class.  Abi is excelling at school in the top groups (as usual!) and is excited to be part of an international school club called "Tournament of the minds".   Teams from other schools around Kampala will compete in December.  I believe they have to create a 20 minute musical incorporating a given criteria with the theme being "Freedom".  She is also part of the school production which will take place in February.  Abi will be 12 years old next week and so we are gearing up for a girls sleepover party this weekend and I am going to try my hand at an oreo ice-cream cake - lets hope the weather is a bit cooler on Saturday!

Matthew had gone through the biggest change of all of us.  He has now left Heritage and joined the rest of us at Rainbow.  We have had a rough few weeks of "exploding emotions" as he has dealt with all the changes  - he finds change very challenging.   Friendships are progressing slowly however most of the boys in his class play football at break and lunch where as Matthew does not.  He has enjoyed playing chess with a few students and is reading avidly at the moment which is always a bonus.  His class are studying fascinating forces at present which he is really enjoying and  he has an assignment on the Wright brothers to complete - right up his street with its links to aviation!  He is settling well all things considered and I am enjoying having him around the primary department to with myself and Eilidh.

Eilidh is continuing to be the happiest child ever! She just gets on with life.  She enjoys school and has made many friends.  She is a great swimmer and has also joined an after school swim club.  We are trying to keep her blonde hair from turning green with the chlorine and the sun - She is the only blonde haired child in Key Stage 1 (about 90 students).  She continues to love music and is desperate for me to teach her piano.  I'm doing my best to teach her violin at the moment  - as long as I can stay ahead of her we should be fine!

Things are busy, as usual, in the hangar. Andy's work is a good mix of routine maintenance and bigger project work. Shortly after getting back he had the job of repainting the red paint on 5X-SCO (Scotty). The strong African sun beating down on the planes is particularly hard on red paint, and so he worked hard to get the red paint cleaned, scuffed, and masked off, then went in one Saturday morning to spray some paint! The plane was looking great, and has now left Uganda to be based for a while in the MAF Liberia programme. The plane that has been there since MAF Liberia began will soon be joining us in Uganda. He is due to go to USA at the end of october for a training course, and when he returns he will be getting straight into his biggest paint job yet - a Cessna Caravan! 5X-BIL is our oldest Caravan, and is looking quite tired. It will come into the hangar at the start of November and stay there for 3 months while we strip all the paint off, do a mini version of the avionics upgrade we have done on our other planes, and repaint her in the MAF colours! Lots of hard work, but very satisfying!

Joyce and Emmanuel are doing well.  They took great care of the house and garden when we were gone.  I came home to bags and bags of frozen raspberries.  We have been busy making lots of jam and continue to sell it around Kampala.

Please continue to pray for Matthew,  that he would make some good friends at his new school.  Please pray for our church also as we do not have a full time pastor at the moment.  It has been great to lead worship there twice since we have been back. Abi often helps me and I'm sure Matthew will be joining on bass guitar sometime in the near future!

Well the children are due home from school in ten minutes so I had better go and get ready for them.  Thanks for your continued prayers and support.
Lots of love
Andy, Heather,  Abi,  Matthew and Eilidh

1 comment:

  1. SO wonderful to hear from you!! I don't get on FaceBook much. I think of you and your family often. Prayers for a blessed Christmas time! Much love...