Sunday, January 24, 2010

Music makers

If only because we figured out to embed YouTube videos (almost too easy), here is our youngest musician in action. He's doing guitar lessons --it's a group lesson with six other 4 and 5 year olds. It is going amazingly well thanks to a talented and hard working instructor who we think we've poached from her work in public health. I think (I hope!) she's having more fun doing this than being a research assistant for Harvard. Well, DUH! Folks here are desperate for such enthusiastic music instructors and she and her husband have more than talent - they have passion, patience and (what's another "p" word?)......persistence? pluck? persimmons? partridges in pear trees?

Tuesday, January 19, 2010

Pets and Vets"

Siku doing his best Ruby impersonation
Good report from all our various vets....M'Siku has recovered nicely from his numerous run-ins with passing cars, is responding well to the bi-monthy de-worming and our sweet Ruby had successful surgery this morning in which the kind doctors at the Lien Animal Clinic in W. Seattle removed an 'aggressively malignant" but "well encapsulated" tumor. At any rate, the past few months the vets have been handing over to us a steady supply of "Elizabethan Collars" and we look forward to the day when all the animals are running around 'cone-free.'

Our cats are again on holiday, a walkabout, or have found a home without a dog that chases them or a monkey that torments them. It's nice they are so independent and we'll continue to feed them and love them and vaccinate them whenever they show up!

The lions at Munda Wanga standing in until our cats re-appear
It's termite season and so....frog season! The frogs come out and eat the termites until they burst! It's disgusting. This fat frog had the good sense to stop eating and is enjoying our garden and entertaining the kids by trying to hop up into the tree - and falling down.

Monday, January 11, 2010

Les Eperviers

I'm sure the rest of you are not as football mad as everyone here (quite sure) but the news from the African Cup of Nations (at our neighbor's in Angola this year) is on the top of our minds, top of the news. Just this morning it was settled that Togo was pulling out of the tournament. Their team bus was attacked by Angola rebels on Friday as they traveled across the border from Congo and the players endured a 30 minute gun-battle. Three died (an assistant coach, the press officer and the bus driver) and 4 players (the goalkeeper quite seriously) were injured. They of course withdrew from the tournament but the players changed their minds and wanted to play. The Togolese government over-ruled and insisted they come home without playing and instead of attending the opening ceremonies they boarded a plane for Lome. Just this morning they officially withdrew from the tournament.

The Togolese team suffered a tragedy in 2007 after a African Cup of Nations qualifier as well when 20 members of their delegation (though no players) were killed in a helicopter explosion and crash at the Lungi International Airport in Sierra Leone. Really rotten luck.

We watched the Cup of Nations opening match last night after the Elvis party, (me with one eye open and then with both eyes closed, snoring on the couch....) between the host country, Angola and Mali. Angola (Palancas Negras (Portugese)/the Black Antelopes) was up 4-0 up until the last few minutes of the game. Les Aigles/Eagles of Mali put in FOUR goals in 16 minutes to finish with a tie.

Our Chipolopolo Boys (Copper Bullets) play Tunisia (Les Aigles de Carthage, the Eagles of Carthage, منتخب تونس لكرة القدم) on Wednesday. Fingers crossed. Neither Zambia or Tunisia qualified for the World Cup this year.

While I'm already doing things I never thought I would do (blogging about African Football?) I'm off to see about getting a chimney sweep over to our WS house. Did you know you are supposed to clean your chimney every year? If we ever find tenants that place will be in the best shape it's ever been! Spit Spot, as Mary Poppins would say!

Friday, January 8, 2010

Annual Tradition

Folks, Elvis is in the house -- our house! Happy 75th the King of Rock and Roll. Come if you can for a rain or shine Blue Hawaii pool party. Cannonball Contest promptly at 4:00. See you at the deep end.

Happy Birthday also to Kathi, Chrissy, Karen (Cunningham and Kerr), Kim, Calder...I'm seeing a trend here...

Les Chats

Our cats, Scorpius and Ryan, looking a little creepy today. The current pet count at 23b stands officially at 3 (two black cats, one black dog), plus two barn owls that live in the garden and the vervet monkey who lives next door but spends 90% of his time in our trees tormenting the dog.


Can you keep a secret? (this photo is a favorite from Dec 2008, an oldie-but-goodie)

Finn has officially launched his website with a flurry of postings (transcribed from his new writing journal) and Owen has promised to put something up weekly on his blog. He is especially interested in people downloading the PDF of his 'Safari Hunt' card game which he posted a link for on his first posting of the new year.

Swimming in the Deep End,
Owen's African Journey,


Keep Calm and Carry on

The Zambian expat take on the WWII era "Keep Calm and Carry On" poster which seems to be THE vintage poster to have in 2010.

Friday, January 1, 2010