Donation target for off-road vehicle reached!

(to see the Deutsch version click on the Title above)

Dear ones,

with great joy and gratitude, we would like to inform you that the Donation target of EUR15,000 for a 4×4 was achieved in March 2019. Wow, who would have thought that?

We would like to thank all donors and supporters! You guys are great!

We have been looking for a suitable off-road vehicle for some time now.

And they had to find out that it is not so easy to find a well maintained vehicle with a few kilometres (100.000km is considered as "just run in" here), a diesel engine and a manual gearbox.

Since in Lesotho the term "maintenance" or "servicing" is not really known, we have to look very closely at what kind of car we are getting. Please pray with us that God will clearly show us the right car, that we will find it and that it will be in our price range.

 

Thanks again to all who supported us financially and in prayer in this project. May God bless you abundantly.

 

All love,
Stephan

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A sign of life....

First tings first!... Yes, we're still alive. And we finally moved to Lesotho.
A lot of our stuff is still packed. We are also still working hard to find out some things like, or where to find e.g.
... the best way to get water when there is not a drop at the water point in the village;
... or how best to get the annoying red dust outside the house without despairing;
.... and how to successfully get the dirt off the boys from just one day without using a wire brush;
... or currently very important for us: to find a reasonably stable internet connection on our premises in order to keep in touch with family and friends. Sometimes you see us dancing allover the place with the mobile phone in our hands just to have a little bit reception. Another time sitting on the top of the mountain, like many other locals, and then you get into conversation and the connection with the phone moves into the background, until you say goodbye and then everything starts all over again, with the search for the network ... yes yes ... just today's problems. For this reason we are unfortunately also very behind to bring you here on the blog on the latest state.
To keep you a little up to date, we have a little vacation report from our base team leader who visited us at the end of last year. She had written it for us. And since we are in Pretoria right now and can use a good internet connection, it is also easy for us to put it online. So have fun reading.

Yours Chrissi and family

Life in Lesotho is:
Sweeping, fetching water and washing feet

(by BärbelDoering)

Over Christmas and New Year's Eve I was in Lesotho to escape the local winter in Germany and to help the Schmidt family move. It was worth it. This will not be a proper travelogue. I'm too full with pictures that swirl in me, not necessarily confused, but also not properly sorted. Here are a few snippets that will hopefully make you happy and perhaps also a bit of desire for a wonderful country and its people.

Sweep: The red earth is beautiful ... outside ... but it doesn't stay there. The wind sweeps them everywhere, through every crack. Especially when it has not rained for a long time and the wind drives the dust through the valley. You have dust everywhere, yes, even on yourself. At least once a day the house has to be swept (if you are new, even more often, because you are not used to the dust ... after three days I gave up and only swept in the morning and evening). But I have learned to appreciate the grass brooms of the Basotho, handmade, shapely, functional. They also work wonderfully in Germany.

Get some water: Chrissi manages to push the wheelbarrow with water containers from the water point uphill to the house. I can't even lift it. We can't all balance objects on our heads yet. Most of the time I limited myself to 2x 5 litres when carrying the water canisters. I was always glad if there was any water at all at our water point. In practical terms, I have learned what it means to know that water is precious. Never before have I been so careful to consume so little. Even after our hot German summer last year - only here did I really waited on rain: watch the clouds - and after the rain quickly go to the well so that you don't have to go back to the neighbouring village. Or to the river, which is still comfortable for us with car, tank and pump. Meanwhile the rain tanks are ready for operation and even a washing machine is connected.

Wash your feet: For the first three days, I thought I could handle it, to come to church or eat somehow with clean feet. Then I gave up and looked forward to the moment on the evening that I had clean feet for a short time, after the following action: fetch water ( warm up if desired), sweep the hut, bucket shower (standing in the bucket with a water), wipe the hut with the used water and then go to bed..When you wake up, the new dust greets you again.

And yet - I enjoyed it:
- Living in a Rondavel
- at night "have to get out" because the starry sky is so incredibly beautiful that you may not be tired at all
- Christmas with picnic at the river and barbecue over an open fire
- Prayer with relaxed quadrilingualism (English, German, Sesotho, Dutch)
- Singing in the Sunday service, of which I did not understand a word, but which simply took me with it into the praise of our great God.
- breathtaking scenery
- the joy that my three sentences Sesotho were understood
- eat together again and again, laugh, work, pray, share life, simply be together
- the sound when after a rainy night the river down in the valley can be heard up at our house
- watch how the roof of a Rondavel is covered
- strangers who start a conversation with their hands and feet
- agave flowers
- unlike Pretoria, feel secure and be able to move around freely

Oh, yeah, "by the way," we have of course still made the move ... on Lesotho side always watched by a bunch of curious kids.

...just see for yourself:

Thank you to God for all. Preservation, for the many help that there were no difficulties at the border (and I am from the cleaning at least on South African side largely could press).

It was all worth the trip.

yours Bärbel

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Building a house in Tomaketsa

In August came our team mate and Masotho ntate Sekelemane (a person who lives in Lesotho is called Masotho). Several are then called Basotho) and announced that he saw a possibility that we could move to Lesotho as soon as possible, because he would have found a house for us. And so it was that one week later we looked at the "house" together.

It turned out that the Basotho understand something different by "house" than wir😉Es was a rather dilapidated hut with two rooms. Quite adventurous, with a leaking roof and two doors that were pulled by the rain and hardly usable anymore. But the Basotho were happy about this opportunity to see us accommodated. We were speechless at the first moment.

But when our team mate showed us the round hut and the view, it was clear to us that God wants us right here on this property. It's hard to describe but we had an unspeakable peace at that moment about living in a dilapidated and far too small hut right here on this spot of earth. And so we contacted the owner and negotiated a contract with him to live on his property.

(The upper left picture shows our hut when you walk towards it from the village. The lower left picture is a view from the round hut to the hut towards the village. The one on the right shows our outhouse during repair. They're affectionately called "Longdrop." She's behind the cabin on the field. Very small to see in the picture below.)

When Stephan came back from Germany in October we started building the garage/warehouse. Many of our team mates help us and we also hire locals to make fast and good progress. They also do work we just can't do, like pouring the floor and making it look so smooth that it looks perfect.

We started with the warehouse, so that we can get everything over to household goods as quickly as possible, so that we can also move out and be on site during construction. Just make things easier. No constant driving back and forth, makes things a lot easier. In addition, the things that belong to you and on the property lie less quickly Beine😉.

Last week we started with the interior work of the hut. The floorer had done a hell of a job. Handicraft, of course. It took him the whole dear long day and he even forgot his food. The floor is now smooth like an ice rink. Tomorrow the other room will be made and on the weekend we can move in and sleep.

 

(sorry, but the light conditions were really hard to handle for my camera.)

We will then use the round hut, in which we had slept so far, as a temporary storage room and continue to use it as a kitchen and lounge in case it rains again. That's how it is in construction. Many things are transitional and provisional, but in the end, once they are finished, they are good.

 

This week we also started pulling the fence. It's kind of better if not everyone comes and goes whenever they want. Day and night. Human or animal. Even our Basotho team mates noticed it every day that we should pull a fence as fast as possible, so that not everyone could run across the property as he wanted. We hadn't felt that bad about it yet, we have to admit. But I think it's because everything is still new and there's a lot of impressions all at once. But there was one thing we had already noticed, and that was that the private sphere somehow falls by the wayside when someone is always standing in front of or at the door. Be it a horde of children, goats or sheep or just a few neighbours who wanted to see what is going on here. It makes you feel like you're in a zoo. And yes, the fence would make a lot of difference.

Some asked if it was normal to draw a fence? You wouldn't see many in the area. Well, if you have the money, you can build a fence around the house, or at least around the field, so that the grazing goats, sheep or cows don't eat the harvest. Or you can at least create a dog to keep unwanted visitors away. However, this leads to a lot of dogs looking for food at night and sneaking around in the villages.

But back to the warren. During the week the warehouse will be closed with a small wall so that the things can be stored safely and dry. That's what the bricklayer has to come for. Unfortunately, he had left us sitting yesterday, because he still had to sleep in his intoxication. A big problem here in Lesotho. The alcohol. So we are again on the search for a suitable man who can help us there. Our teammate ntate Sekelemane is a big help to us. He asks around and looks for the people together who would be suitable to help us and makes the contacts and then translates us. If we didn't have that, everything would be so much harder!!! For him and his wife we are more than grateful that God has put the two by our side. Two treasures of heaven.

 

At this point we would also like to thank our parish Lankwitz in Berlin for the great financial support, without which we would not be able to realize all this. Thank you!!!! Thank you for making this possible and for being with us in the mission!

Thanks also to all the small and big supporters in muscular strength, prayer and keeping in touch. We need all of you. We thank God you exist.

Blessed pre-Christmas time

Yours Chrissi and family

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