Monday, March 28, 2011

In sickness and in health

We - and a fair few of our friends - have been struck by a virulent stomach bug, taking out Joaquim and then Eva. Of course, it happened just as Paulo was leaving for a work trip to Zimbabwe. The little ones are now apparently recovering, but it has not been much of a laugh.

Last night Eva woke up every two hours or so, and what small periods of sleep I managed in between were punctuated by Utama noisily dispatching a bush baby (seems she's got a taste for the local wildlife), and Sebastian crawling into bed with me at some murky point in the early hours. As such, I was fast asleep at 7am when Rafina turned up for work and she had to shout from the locked gate for about 5 minutes to be let in. It was a bit of a scramble to get Sebastian to school (Joaquim pleaded for another day at home), and I only made it through the morning by taking my coffee with me. Let's hope tonight is a bit better.

Here are the two invalids on a happier day - notice a family resemblance?

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Thursday, March 17, 2011

Nature red in tooth and claw

A good day for nature's predators yesterday.

Spike caught what we think was his first mouse - right at my feet - cue a great deal of excitement from him and us. Utama immediately nicked it off him then chewed it noisily just off the veranda (lovely). We have noticed a distinct reduction in rodent activity at home recently; it seems our Jack Russel investment is paying off.

Earlier in the day, a chameleon that had wandered into the house (much to Rafina's alarm as they are considered by local people to be highly venomous, despite being in fact totally harmless) was relocated to a mango sapling outside the yard. As Joaquim, Sebastian and our neighbour Gen watched, I tempted it with a captured grasshopper. Success! The chameleon snapped it up. A great National Geographic moment - if only I had thought to grab my camera.

Of these little events is our entertainment made.

Meanwhile, in Chuiba, the wire-tailed swallows are lining up in ever-increasing numbers, like beads strung on a necklace of electricity lines, gathering and preparing for the great flight North. Cue cooler weather for us, and warmer weather for most of you.


Thursday, March 03, 2011


The rain it raineth in my car
And also on my kitchen table,
But mainly in my car because
My sunroof is a touch unstable.
(With apologies to whoever penned the original, funnier, version)

Having a pretty intense rainy season again this year.

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