Saturday, November 28, 2009

Thanksgiving in Zambia

On Monday I headed back out to the CRC on my bike.  I made my usual stop at Zambikes to bring all the men sweets and get my bike tuned up.  I also wanted to see if the owners (who just so happen to be American) were back from Mozambique.  I walked into the house and sure enough they were home.  I proceeded to invite myself to their Thanksgiving feast and fortunately they approved of the idea.  I was bound and determined to eat something other than Nschima and beans for dinner on Thursday.

I offered to bring mashed potatoes because frankly without any electricity or ingredients there’s not much else to offer.  So I’m going to walk you through my Thanksgiving Day.

Here’s the bag of potatoes that Innocent brought for me the previous day.  At this point it’s about 8:30 AM and I’m already starting my preparations for a dinner that starts at 5:00 PM.


Thankfully Jackie helped me peel the potatoes.  First time I’ve ever used a knife to peel them.  It took me almost two hours to peel and cut all the potatoes.  Good thing I started early.


While I was peeling the potatoes I realized that I was also going to need some milk and butter.  The nearest shop is a 30 minute bike ride so around 11 AM I hopped on my bike and rode to the farm shop. 

On the way I ran into these beauties.  The one on the right is Miriam who’s married to Martin (works for MWB) and her baby Elizabeth.  I also finally met Gertrude, Lubinda’s wife (also works for MWB) and her two kids, Jacqueline and Joseph.  It was so fun to visit with these gems.  They live nearby each other so I paid a visit to both homes.  Miriam loves to dance so while we were at Gertrude’s home we put in some music and danced for a bit.  These Zambians know how to dance.  I’m hoping that it will rub off.


While Miriam and Gertrude were escorting me back to the main road we passed this woman plowing a filled.  They wanted me to stop and do some plowing myself and just laughed at me when I made my futile attempt.


I finally made it home around 1 PM and had some beans for lunch.  I put the potatoes on the fire around 2 PM and studied with the kids for a bit.  At 3 PM I prepared the mashed potatoes. 

At 4 PM I was ready to go.  I put the potatoes in a big container which fortunately fit in my backpack.  I was worried about carrying them on my bike but it all worked perfectly.  It took me about 45 minutes to get there with a few stops along the way to visit with friends.



When I reached Zambike, I was pleasantly surprised to find a full house with a kitchen bustling with women preparing the feast we were about to partake of.  I didn’t know anyone but my two white Zambike friends that I had only met two other times.  It was fun talking to all these white people and finding out what they were doing in Zambia on Thanksgiving Day.

At about 6:30 PM the food was ready so we prayed and began the feast and boy was it a feast.  I hadn’t seen this much food for a long time.  I was in heaven.  I LOVE FOOD!!!  Of course I had a big grin the whole night.  Here’s the line up for food.


See how happy I am with all this food.


Once dinner started I sat by all the Zambian guests.  For some reason I feel more comfortable with them than the muzungoos.  I loved chatting and laughing with them.  There were so many people and they just kept coming.  It was quite the party and I was so glad I invited myself to the occasion.

DSCN0881  DSCN0884


For sure this was my favorite part of the night.  Look at all those pies in Zambia.  It’s like manna from heaven.


A little after 10 PM my new Zambian friends gave me a ride home.  It’s not safe to move around at dark so I was grateful for the ride.  I also got to talk to my sisters.  They were so nice to call and it helped me feel not so far from home.  It was a wonderful Thanksgiving and I was grateful to be so fortunate.


Heidi said...

First of all, you look fabulous! It was so fun to talk to you on Thanksgiving. I was jealous of your unique day and the fun memory that will always be. What an awesome story to tell. I can't get enough of the pictures-keep them coming. First time I had seen a pic of Jackie. She is beautiful.

Lady Fox said...

I'm so glad you got a little bit of home for Thanksgiving. Looks like you had lots of fun. Next time I peel potatoes I will think of you doing the same thing with a knife. Sounds like you've added another chapter to a great adventure story!!

Stephanie said...

Thanks for finally adding some new pictures. It's so wonderful to talk to you, but I need to see pictures too! Keep taking and posting them. Let's hope your Christmas can be just as adventurous

Zach and Jen and Elizabeth said...

What an amazing day! Quite a workout for Thanksgiving - compared to the rest of us who just eat and sit around all day. :) Love the pics. It's awesome to see what you're doing.

Anonymous said...

Ms. Raddatz!!

Hey its Malea and Britney from Africa Club:) We miss you and think you are doing awesomely wonderful fantastic things in Africa and we are soo proud of you! Its fun to read about your adventures. We are going to help Ms. Afsahi with the Shoe Drive at the Middle School. Its going to be amazing and we hope we can impact the lives of your students. We think Emmaneul is pretty cute too:) Britney and I are sad that we're graduating this year so we can't see you before we go off to college. Keep doing your inspiring thang! YOU ROCK MS. RADDATZ WE LOVE YOU!!!:)

-Malea Johnson and Britney Johnson

Anonymous said...

Hello! Its Malea again :) I forgot to leave you my email address:

I know your really busy but if you ever have time, I would love to hear from you!


Anonymous said...

love reading your blog, keep them coming. I expect to see an entry on an African xmas. This will have to count as our quarterly update. see el wet 10

Elisabeth said...

Heather, I just got caught up reading your blog. I laughed, cried, smiled reading about all your adventures. Girl, I'm just glad I know you in some small way. You are amazing. What a beautiful enriching life you are living. Thanks for sharing. I loved reading about the visiting teaching in Africa. Very sobering and real. You are in my thoughts and prayers along with your sweet kids.

Brenna said...

Hed Rad!!!

Oh girl do I miss you! I love reading about your life and adventures... it seriously is such a blessing to me!

I can't wait to someday be in the same room with you and hear all these stories in person! (Oh, and I can't wait for you to meet my little Alta!) Keep your head up, and know that people are praying for you and for the work you are doing there! Your not along woman!