|Not sure if the full stunning effect of the yellow-green outfit shows|
|But, I always have lots of chances to get a shot of a purple or pink shirt|
|More bread-sellers leaving the bakery.|
|We stopped at the Kimbanseke Stake Center|
to wait for Fils, our translator.
Outside the gate, the guard took the opportunity to sit.
Take a close look at what he is sitting on. Ouch!
|As we turned down the sandy road that took us to the well|
we immediately noticed a truck far ahead,
stuck in the sand.
|And another..This poor driver was doing what he could|
to dig himself out.
We got through these stretches of deep, deep sand
only because we had four-wheel drive.
|I loved looking at the different personalities...|
the shy & cautious, the outgoing & friendly, but all curious.
|George usually spots the shy, quiet child & makes friends.|
|Some adults, passing by, stopped to watch.|
|This little stinker in red was putting on quite a show|
of dance moves for our entertainment.
|A sad sight... a darling little boy, |
being taken care of by his big brother
and both of them showing signs of severe malnutrition.
A typical Congolese may eat only once a day,
and yet we have almost never seen malnutrition
such as this.
|If you owned a ball, you were king.|
|11:00 o'clock and all is well|
We are sitting prim and proper in the VIP seats,
along with the other "dignitaries"... waiting to start.
This is typical Congo-Time.
|Big brothers, as well as big sisters, take care of their siblings.|
|Playing a game with a group on the other side of the chairs.|
It appeared to be pretty simple...
Sort of a "Red Rover, Red Rover" type of thing.
|But, it may have been even simpler..|
"Who's brave enough to run across in front of
all the Mundeles and VIPs?"
Notice the angel faces and the precious little boy
on his brother's back.
|Talk about an action picture... some catching, some throwing, |
some running, some dancing! Playing with deflated balls,
but all having fun.
|I was so taken by the expression of this serious little girl.|
|I never saw her smile and thought about the responsibility|
that she has at such a young age.
|With all our experiences of seeing hundreds of children,|
this was the first time I saw any hint of a confrontation.
It didn't get physical & was soon forgotten.
That is so typically Congolese.
|It was time to go home, so off they went... I was sad to see them go.|
|Sometimes you have to scoot that little back-rider up!|
|This was the sand all the kids were playing in...|
Soft, deep, fine and dirty.
|These are very poor children. Their clothes may have started as a donation|
far away in America and handed down again and again.
|Again, the condition of their toys is "throw away" back in the USA|
|Soccer is the overwhelming favorite sport and they|
look better playing than most adult teams I've seen.
|Tired of standing? Just plop down on this dirty sand.|
|11:15am... The guest chairs are still mostly empty.|
|11:30am... This little girl just flopped full body unto the sand and even rolled over in it.|
Some of the village leaders had been waiting patiently as long as we had.
|As they got close, I realized I'd seen the drummer (in red center-back)|
off to the side of the street on our way to the ceremony.
|The reason I remembered him is because 1) he was all in red and|
2) he was wearing a red feather boa, which stood out a bit
since it was about 85 degrees.
When he reached the end of the parade, he did pull up his pants!
|This gives new meaning to "stuffing the ball".|
|Three little boys decided that scrambling up the tree|
and sitting up high would give them the best view.
They climbed up very fast, like little monkeys.
This and another video seem to have uploaded
along with the still pictures... not sure if it will play or not.
|I had to take a picture of this little boy.|
I assume he had no shirt to wear and so he wore his padded jacket...
but it was just too hot to keep it on.
|At last... people came and the ceremony began.|
|This man was introduced as a Police Commander.|
He was very stern looking, but I was determined
to make friends with him.
|Freddy and Teddy, our Church Site Managers in green|
begin the ribbon cutting with the dignitaries.
|The Binghams take a symbolic sip from the glass|
as the Commander waits for his.
|I could be wrong, but I think Sister Bingham had|
a tear in her eye. This was just the week before they left
and she knew it would be their last well-closing.
|The Commander is looking carefully at his glass of water|
and probably very aware of the significance of this well.
|He was shy & not sure what had happened to|
make him be so prominent. But his friends were impressed!
When the Commander came, George put the boy on his
(George's) lap... and introduced him.
The Commander hesitated, then smiled & shook his hand.
|This little girl's play outfit looks just like a night gown|
my girls had when they were young.
It made me sad to think that was all she had to play in.
|Wish this was on video... the DJ started playing|
and several of these kids started really rocking..
especially the boy with the horn on his hand!
|This woman had a beautiful dress & turban, but she seemed|
to be angry about something..
It's hard to tell because Lingala is such an angry-sounding language
that you think two people are arguing when they are not.
|On the way back, a variation of a pink shirt.|
|And another pink dress... now that I've said they are rare,|
I see them everywhere.
|Blue pajamas and the advertisement for a school|
on what WAS a pedestrian overpass before it collapsed.
|The colors match, but if you look carefully,|
the pants are plaid... nevertheless, it's colorful.
|A man in the ankle length Congolese (Muslim?) outfit.|
|Despite the dirt, trash and general squalor,|
you can still see children & adults formally dressed.
This little girl was in satin and tulle.
|It's only an arm, but I SO loved the print & colors|
of this woman's dress.
|I suppose you can rent a preacher here?|
|But, many marriages are held in the "community center".|
Here is a groom and his bride w/ her bridesmaid.
They were obviously stranded due to not having taxis.
We saw them asking strangers for a ride and eventually they did get one.
|Another variation of colorful Congolese shirt|
|The men use parasols as much or more than|
|I thought this was kinda cute...|
Mom has the baby and daughter has the middle child.
|This woman was more beautiful than this picture shows|
and I loved the cut-out feature on her gorgeous dress.
|Streams of people... no, RIVERS of people... walking and walking!|
|It is always touching to see someone taking care of another.|
Here a man & his wife or girlfriend helping
a person (brother?) who is mentally handicapped.
|And, we fuss about the condition of school buses in the USA.|
|This woman is carrying a heavy TV on her head.|
|Just had to get the woman with the silver wig.|
You almost never see a Congolese woman's natural hair.
It is usually covered by a full or partial wig
or lots of extensions, if not in a turban
|Another view of the crush of people|
mixed in with the traffic.
They bob & weave, scoot and slip through
and sometimes barely miss being crushed.
|We don't know if women who are very pregnant stay home|
but we do not see as many as the
population would indicate.
|These blocks of cement are SUPPOSED to keep the|
traffic and people separated. It doesn't work.
|At least he has a red flag on all this rebar.|
We have seen some even longer loads without.
|Car breakdowns are a dozen a day|
but when a broken truck blocks things, it makes traffic even more miserable
and packed like sardines.
|The huge government building with a vast|
and almost entirely wasted parking lot.
|To end on a pretty note, another beautiful, unique and colorful|
Congolese dress. Perhaps, as the younger generation
comes along, they will not be seen.
So, we are thankful to be here while they are.