We live in Mwanza, Tanzania, serving with Emmanuel International helping local churches in physical and spiritual ministry.

Wednesday, 22 October 2014

Boomslang or Bush Snake?

So what do you think? A harmless spotted bush snake or an extremely venomous Boomslang?
The snake that got comfortable in our chair!
The harmless spotted bush snake

The venomous Boomslang Snake
Louisa saw the snake first, thankfully before she sat down! It was lounging in the chair on our verandah. It slithered swiftly off and into a bush beside. We managed to get a photo of it … and kill it, along with the help of Jackson (Lucy’s son who lives here) and a trusty broom handle. We thought it was the harmless bush snake, but it does look suspiciously similar to the Boomslanger! We posted on Facebook and enjoyed the feedback "... the big eye, stumpy nose, and markings on its back like the boomslang"  "...but the small turquoise dots on the scales that are visible when in inhales, and the pattern, of dark and green make it a harmless Spotted Bush Snake..." What do you think?
So our list of snake kills is growing rather dramatically in Mwanza as our first rainy season starts! But at least this snake was outside, far less unnerving than finding one by the bed or beside the toilet!

Also in this, our first start of a rainy season, we are experiencing a significant lack of power. It is always so true that you appreciate all the more what you have when you go without. There are many lessons to learn here , I find! And it all leads to a more thankful heart! Well, I have a renewed appreciation for electricity! Today has been our first day in well over a week in which we have had power all day (I hope I don’t speak too soon!) Our single gas ring has been saving the day, boiling kettles for tea and heating up random food rescued from a defrosting freezer. The other day it even managed a meal of fishcakes, mashed potatoes, cabbage and treat of all treats, baked beans! It took ages but we were all in need of something to beat stale bread and scrambled eggs! This sounds terrible… we did actually have stale bread and scrambled eggs one day, but it’s not all so bad, really! Also, with the fridge defrosting in the kitchen, it leaks water which is a problem with our woven rush-reed mat, dyed red. The kitchen floor then resembles the River Nile after Moses raised his staff for the plague of blood. And with early morning bread dough rising all day in the heat, the kitchen also smells fermentingly like a brewery!
Made-in-the-dark Pesto (there should be a name for this!)
From our fresh basil supply!
As for other activities this week, Amisadai has almost finished a post on their half term, which we are all currently enjoying (even with Louisa's ongoing parasitic problems!) and you will soon be able to read about! Yesterday we were at Baraka’s shamba planting trees following all our crop planting of recent days (and previous blogs). I will just mention a funny comment we heard from bystanders watching us digging and planting, with our Landcruiser, the only vehicle around,  parked close by. “These wazungu (white folks) are planting cars!”
Well, we do need a project vehicle...! 

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