On Monday we went on errands instead of grocery shopping, since Hobsons were in Beira. I agreed to teach the Relief Society sister how to crochet, so I needed to find another store that sold yarn, plus I didn’t know if the one store I had purchased yarn also sold crochet hooks. We also wanted to find some fabric to make a curtain for the laundry room at the Mission Office. A colorful capulana would be just the right size! We couldn’t find the capulana store Yara & Lumiana had taken me to a few weeks ago, so we went to the large fabric store and looked at capulanas there. On the way we stopped at a PEP store. PEP stores are all over the city. They are like a Shopko with an emphasis on clothes. I found a skirt I liked and 2 blouses! As we checked out, we gave a pass-along card to the cashier, who looked questioningly at our name tag.
Missionary opportunities come up regularly. At the fabric store, we purchased a capulana and, when I checked out, I asked the cashier if there was a store nearby that sold yarn. She was a beautiful Indian lady and she explained that I would find yarn at Retrosiria Fakir, a store just around the corner on the same block! This little shop was pack-full of sewing notions of all kind. There was a button wall (like the one at the Valencia store in Nelspruit); yarn and crochet thread (up high above the button wall); rows of ribbon, lace, elastic, trim; sewing thread, etc. It was pretty claustrophobic in there, but we wended our way and a helpful man helped me find 2 balls of heavy-weight crochet cotton. Another young man showed me their collection of crochet hooks. Since I hadn’t made the final decision on what the sisters would make for their beginning project, I didn’t purchase yarn or crochet hooks. Next, we went to the fabric store way down Avenida 24 Julho and I found a piece of super fun fabric for the laundry room curtain – it had colorful pictures of fruit on it!
Monday afternoon Yara came to make brownies and Vanessa came to make cinnamon rolls. Richard is SO glad I am helping them with cookies, because it means a couple of brownie pans to lick and cinnamon rolls for us!
Maybe it won’t happen until the grandchildren go to a third-world country, but I hope they get some kind of idea by the things we write in this blog, how very blessed they are to be born into the families they have. Young people here have a very difficult life. Yara, for example, who is preparing her mission papers, has little if any encouragement from her parents. With blessings come responsibility and when you see a young person in Mozambique preparing to serve, you know it is for the right reason. They feel so grateful for the knowledge of the gospel, they want others to know the transformation the gospel has made in their lives. While we were waiting for brownies to cook, Yara and I sang songs. She was especially interested in learning “Come, Come, Ye Saints.” I explained about the pioneers and their great sacrifice to get to the Salt Lake Valley. “Why should we mourn and think our lot is hard? ‘Tis not so! All is well!” She said, “This is my song today!”
4 new missionaries arrived from the Provo MTC on Tuesday. That evening Sister Gimo brought the dress she needed lengthening. The one dress she had asked about had multiplied to 2 dresses and one flared skirt which needed lengthening!
On Wednesday, our main project for the morning was to put up the new vinyl map on the President’s Transfer Board. Remember, we purchased the map in Nelspruit. It was quite a process, but we did it. The new map is very professional, includes both Swaziland and Mozambique, and highlights the 3 mission centers of strength: Maputo, Beira, and Swaziland. While the map was drying, we inventoried missionary proselyting pamphlets. Here is the before, during and after!
During the 2 hours it took to get to the office I had sewn most of the curtain rings on the curtain I had finished that morning. The new curtain looks great!
Pick-up times and arrival times back to our apartment in the evenings have varied greatly the past couple of weeks!
On Saturday, I brought one of my green sandals to the shoe-repairman who sets up shop on Josina Machel, the same street as the Maputo 2 chapel. Yes, he assured me, I can fix it! I did this Portuguese conversational feat all by myself, as Richard had gone to the chapel. Wonder of wonder, miracle of miracles, he understood me! I would return on Monday with another slipper which needed repairing!
We went to lunch with Hobsons to Café Sol on Saturday. I tried a new item: Ratatouille, a vegetable stew served with rice. It was very good. On Saturdays, there are craft booths at Café Sol and Ann and I looked at the beautiful things which were for sale. The creativity of the things in the Ruth Hanon booth caught my eye: water-color paintings, cards, clever zipper necklaces, pins, rings, bibs, stuffed animals, purses, bags, and a children’s book with her illustrations.
I bought a pin, which I think I’ll use as a pin cushion, and a copy of the children’s book: "O Coração Apaixonado de Embondeiro" ("The Passionate Heart of the Baobab"). The book is a collection of six Mozambican stories about the Baobab tree. I am anxious to spend some time translating it so I can relate these stories to my grandchildren. Ruth autographed the book “Para Tidwell netos, com muito carinho! Espero que gostem delas historias moçambicanas. Ruth, Maputo, agosto 2014.”
On the way home we went to the Central Market and bought some delicious green grapes! We haven’t seen grapes at Premier for a long time. I almost purchased a mango, but the young man at the booth said that it wasn’t the sweet variety we have in Mozambique. This one was from Israel – plus it cost 300 MT (10 USD)!!! Outside the market are lots of walking venders. I saw a blue and white capulana I liked, so soon we were surrounded with other vendors who wanted to get their share of our money! We also stopped by the bay on the way home.
I spent most of the rest of Saturday sewing – lengthening two dresses and a skirt. The skirt was of shiny slick material and I knew it would be very tricky to do, especially for the 160” around the hem! I ended up having to borrow Sister Kretly’s machine, from Sister Hobson, to sew it. I watched a couple of YouTube videos and I learned the trick of sandwiching the seam in between strips of tissue paper - otherwise the machine wanted to eat the fabric! By the evening I was conqueror!
On Sunday at Church we sat by Sofia, the waitress at the Chinese Restaurant. I learned her birthday is September 27, so we had the President and the Secretaries make a note of it! That afternoon we called Brother Jambane and asked if we could go visit him. Since we didn’t know if we’d be able to find out way there alone, he met us down the street and he led us to his home. Brother Jambane loves plants and animals and he has lots of rock doves which live in boxes on his patios.
We had a good time sharing our recent trip to the Lowveld Botanical Garden, Nelspruit. He told us about a park we should visit here in Maputo. We talked about morçegos (bats), pangolim (scaly anteater), and got seeds from his Maravilha plants (Four o’clocks). He has lots more cages full of rabbits than the last time we visited. He gave us a Massala fruit (of "Lion King" fame) to take home.
Do you know what you call flowers which open in the morning and close at night? Well, Brother Jambane calls them “Bom Dia Flowers!” - very appropriate name!
Friday through Sunday was the first Youth Conference held in the Beira District. 200 young people participated!