Family Picture

Here’s our latest family photo, taken at Sunrise Acres in Eldama Ravine, Kenya during a recent team retreat.

There’s not much family news right now except to say that Annalise recently had 35 mango worms imbedded in her skin. It was gross and heart-breaking to pop them all out. If you are wondering what a mango worm is, check this description from a doc in Uganda: (scroll down to the mango worms section).

Published in: on May 2, 2006 at 8:35 pm  Comments (8)  

Feeling Power-less

Since the first of the year, we have been without electricity every other day. Yes, that’s 24 hours on and then 24 hours off. Of course, even when it’s supposed to be on, it is often off. There is usually a fault on the line sometime after they turn the power on, so we get less than 24 hours of power at a time. On the other hand, they often turn the power back on for a few hours in the middle of the night when it is “supposed” to be off. We have even been treated to extended periods of about 40 volts (out of 240). All the bulbs are super dim, and it feels like we’re living by candlelight. This is all very exciting to predict. We regularly prognosticate on whether the power will be off or on at any given time.

The implications of being power-less include planning when and how to run the washer and dryer, operate the computer for email, and keep the all the meat in the deep freeze from spoiling. So far, we have responded with a variety of methods:

1) Our generator will put out 220 volts at the cost of considerable background noise and about $2/hour in petrol
2) an inverter in our hall closet charges batteries for running lights and the fridge when the power is out
3) a bank of old, depleted batteries in the garage runs a fan in our room during power out nights
4) rechargeable fluorescent lights illuminate suppers and baths during outages
5) an LED headlamp and two of those nifty shake-em-up flashlights (the ones on TV) help me navigate the house in the dark
6) a small inverter connected to the truck battery works
7) candles
8) and last, but not least, the backlit screen of my mobile phone helps out

Here’s a shot of me blending a yogurt smoothie using the truck battery.

I have also used the truck battery for: grinding coffee beans, running an inkjet printer, and cutting my hair with the electric clippers (I drug a full-length mirror outside on the porch—quite entertaining).

Published in: on May 2, 2006 at 8:24 pm  Comments (2)