Wednesday, April 26, 2006

caught up with one of our sudanese friends big brother last night which was great. neither of us have met our nieces, both born in perth.

we are currently at Ndalani Orphanage. There's about 400 kids aged 7 to 23, a school, a farm and the home where they all live. case and i will be both teaching and helping out on the farm. there's no phone or internet here.

so we'll catch you all later.

Sunday, April 23, 2006


this morning we went to the church that sheltered mary, joseph and Jesus when they arrived in egypt as refugees.

i can not quite put words how this felt... other than i felt very close to Jesus.

tonight we fly out to Kenya.

Friday, April 21, 2006


just spent 3 days in Alexandria, on the Afican side of the Mediterranean coast. this is the place where it was decided which 27 books would make up the new testament. the bishop of Alexandria (i think his name was Athansius) had the final word in about 260AD (i can't remember exactly but it was about 65 years before Constantine made Christianity the official religion in Rome).

i wonder how he decided which books to pick?

Sunday, April 16, 2006

the perfect ending...

last day in thailand (or so we thought)

downloaded all out photos onto our mp3 player and had a good reminise of our time in thailand - the people we'd met, the places we'd been.

ate a cheap yummy thai curry.

went to the slum where the barkers live and was immersed in the songkran festival in all it's glory. (on the way in the taxi had to stop in the middle of the road, blocked by groups of people soaking wet, dancing and covered in powder. the taxi driver locked the doors and made sure the windows were up. we slowly etched forward through the dancing crowd, who drew love hearts on the window and begged us to open them. the taxi driver let them down just a little and in came the arms, covering our faces in powder.)

ate yummy sweet sticky rice and mango with the barkers - truly gorgeous people.

went back to the hotel, packed neatly.

left for the airport at 12.30am, got there at one. our ticket said our plane left at 4.45 - heaps of time. casey looked at the departure board..... 1.00am ?????????????

we had missed our plane.........
so i am writing this from bangkok, not africa.

Friday, April 14, 2006

good friday

2nd day of songkran

good friday

so far we haven't found a christian church, i don't think there are many in bangkok.

how do we make today meaningful?
meaningful to us that is. good friday is meaningful whether i acknowledge it or not.

i feel like i need to attach some ritual to today to help me realise in the physical world what has happened in the spiritual.
i wonder what happened at my old church this morning. no doubt there would have been a service, which i would love to have attended.

my thoughts come to the cross.
to suffering.
i think of our burmese friends, who suffer.
my mind wonders to all those who face torture today.
my Jesus, please show your face to them.

Thursday, April 13, 2006

in bangkok again. leave for africa on sunday.

today is the first day of 'sonkran' the thai/burmese new year. basically everyone just throws water at everyone else everywhere for three days (at least). i've been hit twice today already. they also rub coloured powder on your face. 'farangs' seem to be high on the hit list.

the elderly go to buddist temples and the monks pour water on them in a more refined manner than whats's happening on the streets. the water is believed to wash away sins and brings good luck.

it's a pretty fun time as most people are on holidays and it's really hot. they put ice cubes in their water guns to make it extra chilli.

we've been on holiday for 2 weeks now... and we've done nothing but consume... accomodation, food, motor bike rides, movies, bus trips... it has become a bit meaningless and i can't wait to get to Africa where we can hopefully contribute something.


Thursday, April 06, 2006


just spent a week back packing in laos. great fun. heaps of english speakers to make friends with.

we caught a slow boat from the Thai Loas border to Lang Probang. It was a 2 day trip and we were suppose to stop over night at a guest house on the side of the Mekong. The boat was about 2 metres wide and 40 metres long, all wooden and covered in colourful flacky paint. There were about 70 'falangs' and 15 or so locals. the seats were small and hard, but the scenery was stunning.

it's coming to the end of the dry season so the rivers are low, and at one point we ran aground. our boat came to a grinding halt and then tipped to the right (i was sitting on window sill on the left and prepared to launch myself out) everyone else spontaneously jumped to the left... and the boat tipped to the left - too far. so everyone spontaneously jumped to the right, and the boat tipped to the right - too far. a Lao woman at the back screamed something in Loa and everyone sat down. the boat righted itself and we continued on, hearts beating a little faster.

later that evening we stopped on the side of the river. there were rapids ahead and the river was too low to cross. we were all instructed to get out and walk a km or so down river. hopefully with out the weight of the passangers our boat would be able to pass though. so we trouped off and waited down river, looking expectantly up the rapids, waiting for our boat. it didn't come.

their was only one man on the boat who could speak both Lao and English and he was a buddist monk. He gathered everyone around. "We have a problem" he began. "Firstly i would just like to say that i am a passenger and this is my problem too." clever man. "The boat is not able to pass through. we must walk back to the boat and sleep on the side of the river."

no worries.

we walked back and set up camp. it was a beautiful warm night and there was some nice white soft sand to sleep on. we set up three camp fires and they even managed to find us some fried rice and drinking water from a nearby village. it was actually turning out to be a perfect night... and i wish that's where the story ended.

first we ignored the lightning, then we ignored the thunder (except the Laos, they all climbed back on the boat to get the best sleeping spots) we could not ignore the rain. each drop felt like half a cup of water.

and by 9pm we were all huddled back on the boat. it was cramped. it was damp. the floor was hard and not quite flat. it was completely pitch black.

not the best night sleep we ever had...