Friday, January 23, 2015

Settling in

We have done a lot of things in a short time.

We are learning many new things and meeting new people. On our walk to work every morning we are greeting the same people and are starting to become part of the landscape.  We take a longish route to work because it is difficult to cross eight "lanes" of traffic ( lanes don't really exist). We cross under a bridge where there are less lanes to contend with and the traffic is forced to slow down.

We celebrated Epiphany at Anafora, a Coptic orthodox retreat centre along with 350 other people.  We took most of the team with us and got to know them a bit better. The evening service was four hours long, with a lot of standing and incense and liturgy.  The climax was a processional following the cross to the swimming pool where it was launched.  This year the entire evening was being broadcast on television, so who knows, maybe all of the Middle East saw us there. Everything was candle lit, even the edges of the pool, so it was really beautiful. 

We attended a funeral today for a member of the Sudanese church. That was a solemn experience, as the woman was burned in a cooking gas explosion with a number of other people, so this was the fourth funeral in two weeks for the congregation. 

We've had power outages at our flat three evenings already. They only last an hour or so, so not a big deal, but summer is supposed to be the time of power failures, not winter, so we weren't expecting that.  The evenings have been pretty cold in the flat, as ther is no insulation in the brick walls, and no central heat. Our air conditioner can heat the bedroom, so we have used that a bit to take the chill off before bed.

We were at Sun City Mall one evening where they have an indoor skating rink. It was amusing to see all the non skaters shuffle around the small ice surface with orange plastic chair like things to assist them.

We've had fun finding food in our neighbourhood. We have a range of stores to choose from, from upscale to stall on the sidewalk. Everything we need is close by.  Our most interesting find was mini egg plants with the centres hollowed out so that they can easily be stuffed with rice and seasonings. We made a delicious meal out of those.

We've rearranged furniture at home and at the office to our satisfaction and have found a place for most things to be. 

We've made friends at church and plan to go back again tomorrow. 

We've skyped with some of our family in Canada and have been able to show them where we live.

So far, so good.