The first to do was a wonderful breakfast in the home of the Mbuyisa family where we had the pleasure to be accommodated the last two days. We say “Thank you” for giving us this chance to experience the feeling of being welcomed!
Our Sunday service we had in the church of Sobanto. The service was conducted by the Young Aldult’s League supported by Rev. Magdalene Nzama, one of the self-supporting pastors of PMB-North parish. What a lively service. We were happy to convey the greetings of Pirna circuit.
After the service we drove towards Durban. First stay was and still is the home of Zama and Khaya Hlengwa in Section K of Umlazi township. Even we arrived a little late we were able parts of the guest to the baptising ceremony for their last born daughter. There have been Rhosta Gcaba and her daughter in law as well as other friends we know from meetings years ago, what made us feeling home again.
Sunday service in Sobantu
Zama with her first daugther after two sons
Khaya Hlenwa with his daughter, Mama Zama and her mother
Our Saturday started very relaxing at “Butterflies for Africa”. This small place present various butterflies mainly from Africa, but also some insects and newly some very small monkeys.
In the afternoon we had the chance to visit Ingrid Thompson. This lady, member of Eastwood congregation (PMB-North parish) had been a delegation member from Durban and Umgeni circuits to Melle and Pirna circuits in 1995. It has been a blessing to exchange our remembering to those times. She reminds me to my words, that we as Germans don’t like so see “white elephants” (oversized projects) but well planned projects which are realistic and easier to handle.
Lastly, we had a meeting with MaDlamini (Ncami), member of a social worker’s delegation in2009 and nowadays “chief of communication” for the Farming Project in Bischopstowe. Together with her husband Bongani, she introduced us to their parents families and relatives in Henley east from Pietermaritzburg.
In the evening we had a “work supper” which revived our friendship. We were able to exchange our opinions about the latest changes in Germany and find a solid basis to continue our work for the project.
Children in Makhebiza Kindergarten, hiding under a bed
Friday smells like: The weekend is near. People have to their last work before the free days are coming. Elke and myself were busy, as the last days in Umgeni circuit are ending on Sunday: We said Goodbye to our host for the last two day, Rev. Magdalene Nzama. We met Mrs Rejoyce Mfeka for an hour to share memories of Thulazizwe and my Mom Dorothea and to hear about the fundraising of the women league for the new deanery in Bishopstowe. The following stop was to hand over a donation from Rev. Duscha for the kindergarten in Makhebiza, he collected in services in Bad Eilsen. Then we were welcomed in Pius Mbuyisas new home, where we are accommodated for the next two nights. Pius also took us to town and showed is his new business, a big bookmaker office. (See photos and klick on to get a bigger version.
Traffic jam in Pietermaritzburg on Friday afternoon
Hollywoood Bookmaker bet shop, run by Pius Mbuyisa.
Please excuse, that today’s blog is short. It has been hot again (32°C= and will be even hotter the next days: 35°C are expected!
What a surprise when we came to the Bishopstowe Project today, which is now called “Farming Project Churches Agape Foods”. We met two of the workers, Philip Nsibande and Zithobile Mkhize in the project (both from Imbali congregation, PMB-South parish), who showed us some of the animal and some of the planting projects. First of all: The production of hens and chicken is successful and make a profit of 1,900 Rand per month alone. The same, the production of salads and other vegetables has been successful. Dean Myaka told us two evenings before that the production and selling has been so good, that they are now improving to optimize the plots for plantings to offer everything the whole year and not only seasonal. It seems as if the market is very much in favour of the products. We hope to meet members of the project board the next days to speek about the future plans of the project.
At the project site we also met 10 Student of theology. As the LTI (Lutheran Theological Institute) in Pietermaritzburg has been closed town two weeks ago, as one of the stakeholder escaped, the student got a shelter at the plot in Bishopstowe. They are studying as a group and get lessons by Rev. Sibiya. The future of the LTI is very open but unclear.
Finally I have to report, that the new deanery beside the project site is growing. Two weeks ago, we got photos sent by Pius Mbuyisa. They were showing the digging for the fundaments. When we arrived today, the first brick layers were done and the workers were busy to fill in the basic flor with concret. (See photo).
The day was hot – 31°C! So we relaxed together with Happy Mzila at the veranda of her home and spoke about lot of things in our personal history. Happy showed us her big garden and explained the details they took over from the first owner and how they changed some things. Today some geese, chicken, ducks, goats and turkeys have space to live, and many trees are spending their fruits to feeds the family the same like different vegies. And the dog Sammy has his eyes and his nose to observe everyone and everything.
After midday we went on with our (his)stories until it was time to say goodbye. We drove toward another part of Pietermaritzburg where Rev. Magdalene Nzama is living together with many people she is giving a shelter. After the welcoming with “Hallo” and laughter the ladies in the kitchen where busy to prepare a wonderful supper we had together with “Maggy”. Finally again the kitchen crew was in action…
The day started with an opulent breakfast together with Happy, followed by a walk through the location she is living in. Thereafter, we drove to the Liberty Mall, Pietermaritzburg biggest shopping centre, to buy some food for the evening.
Furthermore, we visited the church at the small preaching place Sweetwater, where Happy and Bongani Mzila are serving as lay preachers. With their engagement they try to bring up this preaching place to a status of a congregation. This means there are at least 50 active members in need.
Thereafter, I got a nice lesson in modern computer made music, composed by Ndunduso, the sun of Happy. He is working parttime as a DJ (see photo).
Finally we had a wunderfull supper, and Dean Nathi Myaka jumpt in to welcome us. We will meet him again the next days. Tomorrow we will change again our accommodation: Magdalene Nzama will be our new host. Read more about this the next days.
Todays program was simply travelling – from Midrand to Pietermaritzburg. This means to make the distance of 600 km from Gauteng Province to KwaZulu-Natal.
We started in the morning at 8.30 a.m. with tearser in our when saying goodbye to Nolwazi, Mohlanka and the twin ladys. the tour has been unspectular, not much traffic, a brown to yellow landscape under a deep blue sky. Finally we arrived at 5.30 p.m. headly wellcomed by Happy Mzila.
This Sunday we had a visit to the museum “Cradle of humankind” in Maropeng, about 60 km North-West from Midway. Nolwazi was with us.
The museum shows the development of life from the birth of our Earth to the modern humans including their problems to protect god’s creation. The place in Maropeng was chosen as the oldest bones of humans were found here in the 1990s.
The museums is not stopping with celebrating this sensation, but put the main spot on the development of what make us human: our multi-talented body, our usage of tools, our various ways of communication. And also the human made dangers for the survival of humans on Earth are shown by multiple usages of media including try-out-stations to test senses and knowledge.
We enjoyed this day very much. Tomorrow we’ll drive to Pietermaritzburg, the capital of the South-Eastern province KwaZulu-Natal. This will take the whole day. We are glade to find our next beds at Happy Mzilas home, who invited us to stay with her.
Today and tomorrow we are together with the Molapo-family. Members of the family are Mohlanka and his wife Nolwazi and their two twin-daughters Kholu (Chodu in German speaking) and Ntoitse. Nolwazi had been the very first volunteer from South Africa, sent by the lutheran circuit of Durban to its partner circuit Melle (nowadays Melle-Georgsmarienhütte circuit). She was in Germany in the year 1994, nearly 20 years ago – and our friendship with her and her family is still very lively!
After having Breakfast together in a very welcoming atmosphere we went together to a big school festival, as the daughter, which become five years old in May, are in a pre-kindergarten, which is belonging to the American International School in Johannesburg. A big sized green area of the school ground was filled with attractive offerings to play and discover in a American style – loud and colourful.
While the girls and her father had more joy on the playground, Nolwazi invited Elke and me to have a visit to the “Monte Casino Bird Sanctury” in Four-Way, a spectacular show of bird and other smaller animals from all over the world.
All the events of the day have been accompanied by talks with Nolwazi and Mohlanka in a very trustful atmosphere about private and political topic and with games and coming nearer with Kholu and Ntoitse. Thank you for the day!
I’m not the first time in Dubai. But again I feel the globalization in this place, which brings together people from Asia, Europe, Africa and the Americas. But people don’t realy talk with another. Some are lookng how to spend their money. Others are simply waiting for teir connection flight. Some seam to be lost in the hugh building. Elke and me are waiting for the next flight to Johannesburg…