Thursday 23rd June
Yesterday I met up with Mrs. Sianga and, among other things, she showed me the computer which I had been warned was not working well! She was right!! The computer took ages to start-up and very quickly slowed to the extent that is was totally unusable – and then it wouldn't shut down – at least in the time I was willing to allow. I took the opportunity to take it away with me. (It wouldn't feel right if I didn't have a broken computer or two in my room.)
Mrs. Sianga employs teachers awaiting appointment to a government school. Unfortunately there are very many of these trained teachers, some who have been waiting several years for their first appointment. However things are about to change and three quarters of the teachers at Mrs. Sianga's PIZZ School have suddenly received appointments.
There are elections coming up in Zambia very shortly.
PIZZ school has benefited from some Hands Around the World related donations, since I was here in December. This has allowed the school to purchase 120 books among other things and is likely to have a positive impact on the exams coming up in October – even if the staffing issues are detrimental.
Everyone is looking forward to Dilys and Amy coming in August. All are keen to arrange something special for Amy, relating to children or young people. I met Mrs. Chiiya this afternoon and she reminded me that her daughter Saki will be at home in August when the schools have their break. Saki is also 15 years old and I am sure will be delighted to show Amy how girls of that age enjoy themselves here, and will introduce her to some of her friends. I remember one time when Saki provided me with drinks and biscuits at their home, when her mother wasn't around – this was perhaps four or more years ago. I was reminded yesterday that children here are expected to do a variety of household chores – including waiting on guests.
I called at the hospital again this morning and met the new Medical Superintendent. I briefly explained what I had been involved in at the hospital and the involvement of Hands Around The World. Not surprisingly the issue of viruses arose! I will return tomorrow to discuss databases with the Human Resources Manager. Why does my life here keep coming back to computer viruses and databases?
Dilys sent me a text to say that Amy's surgery demanded over £200 before they would start giving any injections – so much for a free NHS! I suspect more people will take the risk and not have the injections when going abroad. Apparently the doctor even needs £12 to write a prescription for antimalarials – that's two weeks income for someone here!
Jennipher reminded me that some of her clients want solar radios. This allows them to know the time to take their tablets and also provides some lessons for the children. (Some local stations give school lessons for those unable to attend a school.) If anyone wants to donate a radio, Dilys and Amy should be able to bring a few out with them.
I suspect that if I stay here with the priests I will put on weight! I am currently getting two cooked meals a day and lots of nshima!
Oh yes! I found a rogue file on this laptop and it seems to work OK after deleting it.
Howqver it has anothqr problqm!! The e doqsn't function! I can work around it, but wq use a lot of es – fortunately not as many qs!
With love and prayers