Sunday, March 30, 2008


There are big, white bats here. Okay, not white exactly. But a warm, tawny brown. Sort of like the Velveteen Rabbit, but much, much more vermin-like. I like Kabwe. It was recently ranked the 4th most polluted city in the world due to some mining disaster, but I like the cool, breezy evenings and the bustling downtown streets. Our NGO is hosting a workshop in association with the Tamar Campaign, a continent wide project that aims at educating churches about gender-based violence, its link to HIV/AIDS, and to empower leaders to engage Biblical texts contextually to address issues of social injustice. The 2 facilitators from South Africa are full of spitfire and energy: my favorite kind of women.

This national church gathering was by far more fun than any church function we North Americans or Europeans could come up with. We spent our final evening together dancing, singing, performing impromptu sketches, and sharing stories and proverbs from our villages. And what did I have to contribute? I danced my favorite dances with the ladies, but could not come up with any witty cultural riddles or songs to sing “from my village.” So you know what saved me? “How much wood would a woodchuck chuck if a woodchuck could chuck wood?” Yes, this is all I could come up with. Embarrassing. That was my cultural contribution to the evening.


David Hallgren said...

Hi Carmen,
I traveled a bit on Saturday and lis.tened to the PCUM Travel mix CD. It made me miss you and Rhoda! I hope you are doing well. I can't wait to hear more about your amazing adventures.

Emily said...

I love catching up on your blogs! (and need to work on my own) what fabulous experieneces, opportunities, relationships,... photos! I'm going to look forward to seeing your dances when you return! :)

Camille said...

Hi Carmen,
I'm loving your blog and amazing photos. Thanks for flying the MAPC/ PTS flag in Zambia for those of us relegated to office ad-ministry jobs! With you in spirit and in prayer. Blessings- Camille Cook

Alissa Maxwell said...

Maybe we need to bring you back state-side to help you remember those cultural nuggets? Oh, no, I think "How Much Wood Could a Woodchuck Chuck" is probably about as good as it gets. =)

Mariam said...

"How Much Wood..." I love it! Thanks for sharing your amazing adventures, Carmen. Stay in good health and spirits, and we'll keep praying for you at MAPC. May God keep blessing you and your extended, new family there.
Mariam Touba