Karen was not feeling really good today and Juliana is still gone for her niece’s wedding, so we were unable to attend the grand opening of the Anglican Bible School/Vocational Carpentry School. With no one to cook, and my honey not feeling well, we took her to a local restaurant that is in Bunda and owned and operated by the daughter of the former District Commissioner here who help Karen get the library opened. They make terrific fruit smoothies, and as that was all Karen thought she could keep down, we took her there. She was able to drink three banana smoothies and was feeling somewhat better when we returned. The restaurant is off the main road far enough to keep the sound away and is in a beautiful environment. We sat on a shaded patio and watched the white butterflies as they flitted around the flowers. A large, male Agama lizard’s antics also entertained us (male Agama’s are bright red from their nose to their middle and then bright blue from there to the tip of their tails). We were the only patrons and there was a cool breeze blowing. It was a very nice, quiet, and lovely place where we spent a couple of hours (no fast food in Tanzania) just resting, reading from our iPads (yes Virginia, we do have high tech in Bunda), and talking to the owner who wants John to teach her how to make more dishes for non-Africans (wazungu). Shaban had pulled two filters from the molds this morning as we are filling orders for four new biosand filters (clean, safe drinking water for another one hundred and twenty people) and drove us to our luncheon retreat. He had stayed up most of the night watching English soccer games, so he slept in the car until the food arrived. Edina, who usually just works outside, helped out in Juliana’s absence and while we were out of the way, mopped and swept every floor and porch. We returned to a very clean and neat house. Karen is still a little under the weather, but otherwise we had a wonderful little interlude. She did cry a little when she reread my little Valentine poem I wrote her yesterday, reprinted here:
“There is still the movement in my heart when I feel your touch,
When you stop to kiss my head, the world stops spinning for just a moment.
Your touch at night when you think I sleep, calms and pleases me,
Just knowing you are near me in the night lets me sleep in peace.
We have shared love for almost fifty years, yet it is not done or old or faded,
It is a living, breathing thing that binds us as tightly as it did the day we wed.
This Valentines Day, I remember you for all you have meant and mean to me,
We go forward—together—as we always have and always will.
I love you more than you will ever know—my Valentine of so many years,
Yet it is not yet enough. The future is still in our embrace.”