Laugh of Approval
We’ve had another fantastic and seemingly unpredictable day here in Zambia. Last night, after our unforgettable chicken and children photo shoot, we went home to rest up for dinner with Charles (the executive director of Hope Ministries) and his wife Margaret. We started dinner off with what has proven to be fairly typical experience here: a blackout. This one was particularly treacherous though, as it had stolen our dessert because the power was off for too long for Margaret to complete the final course. 🙂 We were stuffed to the brim as it was, though, with rice, chicken, nshima, fish, pumpkin leaves, pumpkin and maize. Dinner ended up being a hilarious lesson about Zambian dowries or, as Charles calls them, “tokens of appreciation” that suitors pay a woman’s family for her hand in marriage. They’re pretty big tokens at thousands of dollars per daughter, though! When it was time to head home, we caught our wonderful driver, Gift, watching Hannah Montana in Charles’ family’s shop, which turned out to be only half as funny as Rich’s subsequent confession that he has Miley Cyrus on his iTunes.
After a good laugh and another restful night (with quite a rainstorm), we headed off to church this morning, which was moved into one of the classrooms at the new Shelby Goldstein schoolhouse because the church’s floors were flooded from the evening’s rain. Rich gave a great speech that included the proverb, “If you want to go fast, go alone, if you want to go far, go together,” which Rich delivered in what Margaret was not afraid to call distinctly western-sounding Bemba. Rich’s Bemba elicited a roar of laughter from the congregation. Charles and Margaret explained that it was clearly a “laugh of approval,” but I’m fairly certain they were just trying to make us feel better because I’m pretty sure I got the same kind of laughter when Margaret had me get up and dance to the music in front of the rest of the congregation. Either way, we had a fantastic time and took lots of pictures that we’ll share as soon as we can!