June 6, 2017

The biggest frustration being here is not that lack of fresh water for bathing…. we now have it and we stick a hot poker in it to make it warm for a “bath”…Otherwise, we just do what my mother called “spit baths” out of a bucket.  It is not the heavy work… we get up at 6:30 and go until 10:00 at night, each seeing individuals for spiritual direction or reflexology 3-4 times a day between sessions. It is not the rain…which comes frequently daily and does not always cool the air but saturates it with heavy moisture.  It is not the language even… I am getting better at speaking and Victoria has her own patois that she uses with individuals and they get it… we also have interpreters come with individuals periodically to talk… and Fr. Joe has been marvelous at translating. I hope you got the picture of the three of us in the 2nd Updates.

No, the hardest thing is not being able to access internet to communicate with you. We feel we are not including you in the journey.  Father has a modem that I am using now to send this.  The work is very rewarding. We are all laughing together, dancing, and praying. Many of the sisters have communicated how wonderful this new type of retreat is. Time for sharing and for quiet. The food is abundant for the head table. Today we had “puff-puffs…. like big donut holes and no sugar. Yesterday, my favorite…bean cake a.k.a bean pudding. Loved it. Told them they have to teach me how to make it.  Lots of fish and yesterday…RABBIT. Nice, though. And another new thing… have you every heard of avocado wine? It is a liqueur made by a sister from the Congo.  Excellent.

WE are in good shape and very happy at how the work is going. No time to wash our clothes or clean yet. That will come on Saturday when we have free time.

Love to you all,

Nicki and Victoria