Tuesday, February 17, 2009

Gary and Rebecca have two dogs here, a male and a female. These dogs are HUGE dogs, so they make really good guard dogs. The male one, Mordecai, has been limping since I got here so Rebecca decided to take him to the vet this past Saturday. This vet was recommended by a friend, but about an hour and a half away in Kasane, Botswana. We were on the road by 10, hoping and praying to be able to see some cool animals along the way. Right after we went got through the Ngoma boarder in Botswana we entered Chobe National Park, the place where I might be able to go on safari, and saw two elephants right on the side of the road. It was so awesome because they were about 10-15 feet away from the car!! After stopping for a few pictures, we continued through the park and saw two warthogs and a sable, which was beautiful! Rebecca said that usually you can see giraffes, lions and zebras, but since it’s the rainy season the trees are covered and there’s a lot of grass everywhere. It also didn’t help that we were driving through so late in the day, when it was the hottest, and the animals were at watering holes. But I’ll have to decide if I want to spend the money to go on safari through that park since I might not even be able to see much, if anything.
Anyway, we made it to the vet and found out that Mordecai has hip dysplasia and Rebecca is trying to decide what to do with him since she can’t really afford medicine to keep him pain free. It’s sad because he’s only a year old and she wanted to breed him with the female so they could sell the puppies for money for the Mufuta feeding center they have, which I haven’t been to yet, where they have food for kids in the area and are hoping on opening a pre-school soon. She said that she planned on breeding the dogs so it could be something that she felt she was doing to help the center since she can’t really donate her time. Luckily, she can contact the person who sold Mordecai to her and she can either get another dog or her money back, but it still means around another year before she’ll have any puppies to sell.
To complete my adventure in Botswana I had the pleasure of talking to the vet and his weird ex- wife, who was visiting from Sarasota, Florida. The vet was an older white man who knew everything about everything. He was very full of himself, saying that he was single-handedly saving the wildlife here because he operates on them for free and spays and neuters pets in the area for free. Then he told us that we could pay for some medicine that would re-grow Mordecai’s cartilage…….He then had his ex-wife come out, who looked really out of it. She started talking to Rebecca and I about what was going on in America and how the women in Florida were planning a revolution and that 9/11 was a lie (apparently 4 of the richest families in the world planned the whole thing just to hurt people). She said she didn’t like Obama and that she believes that the end of the world is near. It was definitely an interesting afternoon!
We got back late afternoon and that night we decided to watch Wall-E with the kids, which was pretty much a waste of time. They didn’t really like it because they didn’t understand it. I think the movie was about 5 minutes in when they started asking me what everything was (the robot, the spaceship, etc.). They have never heard of that type of stuff, so they didn’t know what was going on. I’ve come across a couple situations like that this week; one boy was doing spelling words and asked what coast meant. I started saying something about the beach, then realized that he had no clue what I was talking about, and it’s not like I could say “It’s what you do when you drive a car on the highway…” either. I also went to sing “Hurry, Hurry Drive the Fire truck with the younger kids, but then realized that they didn’t know what that was. But I have also had times where I didn’t know what they were saying too, like in the classroom when that same boy was asking for t-pex (sp?) and I kept saying “What??? What??” and finally he was like, “WHITE….OUT”.
We’ve had a lot of kids sick the past week with the flu, so that’s probably going to be a problem for another couple of weeks with 60 kids! Another handful of kids are complaining about injuries because they have been practicing so hard for this competition, but the men who are training these kids don’t have them stretch before or after they run! They also will practice for a few hours without drinking any water, which doesn’t help either since it’s been so hot lately (Sunday afternoon I thought I was going to die when I was playing soccer!) Rebecca is going to talk to those men, who believe that the kids have to warm up their muscles before they stretch, and tell them to make the kids stretch first. Hopefully that will fix their problems!
One last thing that I haven’t mentioned in any of these blogs yet is that at the end of March I am going with Rebecca (and maybe one of the older girls here) to Cape Town, South Africa! Rebecca had asked me the first week I was here if I would be willing to go with her, since it’s hard for her and Gary to be gone at the same time. She is going down there to have some surgery done and needs someone else to go to do the driving and just to have another person while she’s going through surgery. We will be gone about 2 weeks, but 6 days of it will be driving. The girl who might come with us has been having some really bad headaches and has low blood pressure, so they want to take her to a doctor down there. I am excited to go, even though the 30 hours of driving will be boring for the most part (we are driving all the way through Namibia, through the Capital, Windhoek, and then down through South Africa). While we are there I will be able to do some sightseeing, so that will make up for the driving! Well I feel like I have rambled on and on, so I’m going for now!

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