THE dedication ceremony! … and a couple of days of R&R at Chobe National Park, Botswana and Livingstone, Zambia

At the end of every Habitat for Humanity build, there is a farewell or dedication ceremony for the family and the build team. The community gathered on July 18th to share in the dedication of two homes, one to Gertrude and her husband, Moffat, and one to Brenda.

Since the ceremony, our team has had a non-stop schedule and I haven’t had a chance to post anything about that day, or any of our time since. I have a feeling that I won’t have an opportunity until I’m on my own next week! Briefly, our farewell gathering was… well, I don’t know what other word to use besides joyous! There were emotional speeches by both women, and there was dancing… lots of dancing (dance troupe video and dance troupe, homeowners & build team video). And singing. A wonderful way for us to remember the lovely people we had a chance to spend time with and start to get to know. I will include photos, some video clips, and more detail when I have more time! And I will try my best to get a copy of the video of our team dancing, our team singing… and me getting pulled up to dance with the dance troupe that performed. That was a surprise!!! Those videos may not come until after our team gets back home and folks have an opportunity to edit and upload. But I promise… the footage will come! Some photos for now…

On Wednesday, our team took a bus from Lusaka to Livingstone, in the south of Zambia. We got up before 4:00am to catch a 5:30am bus… for a fairly nail-biting 6 hour drive! We were very, very relieved to arrive in one piece to our accommodation at Prana Tented Camp, about 10km outside of Livingstone. Again… more detail to come about our stay here but for now I’ll say… incredible!!!

Then today, Thursday, we drove an hour to cross the border at Kazungula, Zambia to arrive in Kasane, Botswana, where we then drove to Chobe National Park and spent the day with the animals. I can easily say… one of THE most memorable days of my entire life!!! We saw soooooo many animals and had a couple of rare opportunities, including watching an African elephant swim across the Chobe river. Yes… I got video!!! A taste of what we saw today… with more to come!

So… lots to tell when I have a chance to spend more time. The internet here is not always reliable but even when it is… it’s not as fast as at home. Not that I would expect it to be but it’s amazing how we take it for granted at home. Tomorrow, we’re off to Victoria Falls in the morning and then to Mosi oa Tunya Park just outside of Livingstone for a walking safari in the late afternoon to see White Rhinos!!! This has been the experience of a lifetime!!! Will post more when I can!

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