Boxes and Candles and Chocolate Christmas Trees

 

Yesterday was not a normal work day, but at the same time the action was very familiar to me – I moved house!! Let’s see, this makes the tally thus far: 3rd country, 7th city, 13th house. No wonder I feel strangely comfortable in the middle of a relocation…

The Relocation Team - Ben, Dan, Kep, Nicki, Emma

The Team: Ben, Dan, Kep, Nicki,Β me

This move was basically a house swap with my upstairs neighbour, Doug Miles (MAF PNG Ops Director), who very kindly agreed to shift at my request. Being downstairs is preferable for me, as I was feeling just a little exposed and vulnerable being perched above the street and being a young female living alone. So now I am behind the fence and down at the ground level, meaning I don’t walk out my front door and into the view of the entire street and rugby field. I’m also on the level of the garden, which is nice as I’ve been keen to do a bit of planting and growing. I love flowers and will enjoy being much more in the midst of them, and it also means that IJ can run out the door and straight into the world of greenery, banana trees and pineapple plants πŸ™‚
We spent the whole afternoon shifting things up and down in the rain, trying not to get too confused as to what was going where – the houses are mirror image, and sometimes I had to pause and think which house I was in to know if I should be taking a box up or down! We had a great team of helpers – several of the MAF Maintenance guys worked like legends, and “Mum” Nicki spent her whole afternoon cleaning/swapping kitchens, carrying boxes, and fortifying us all with water and cups of tea! She even managed to cook dinner for 6 people that night, kindly inviting Doug and I to join them after our move…
Ready to go!

Shiv & I ready to host the evening

Last Friday was a bit of fun, as I hosted a ladies event for the MAF women. We try to get together once a month for a bit of fellowship – sometimes we share devotions and prayer, sometimes we do an activity, sometimes we just enjoy a meal and catching up with each other as we’re scattered on different compounds around town.

Siobhain and I decided to do the November event together, and we made it

constructing the chocolate Christmas tree!!!

the Chocolate Christmas Tree!!

a night of crafts. We had three craft activities – paper crafts (my corner), knitting & decoupage (Siobhain), and a demonstration (from a local lady who runs a cake shop) on how to create *drumroll* A CHOCOLATE CHRISTMAS TREE!! Needless to say, with a group of about 15 women, this was a huge hit πŸ˜‰ We had lots of fun crafting and chatting and eating chocolate, most of it by candlelight when the power went off an hour into the evening’s activities. IJ had a ball being the center of attention and playing with everything that rustled or moved πŸ˜‰

The power and internet and even the phone network have been particularly bad as of late. At least I’m saving money on my power bill, right?!
craft by lantern light

crafts by lantern light

There is often little to no power on weekends plus several blackout nights a week. But the past four nights in a row we have been without power, which basically means that when I get home I have about an hour of daylight left to do everything that is tricky to do by torch/candlelight (such as, say, sorting and unpacking an entire house!!). I have burned my way through a number of candles in the past few weeks, and am grateful to have a good supply of good quality candles (thanks to my dear Mamma and to Jill Beagrie!). IJ has burned his way to a greater respect of the mini flames, and is now rather careful around them, which is not a bad thing πŸ˜‰

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