Wednesday, January 17, 2007

African Uno

Since we have been here in Zambia, there have been various creatures we've had to encounter, some more dangerous than others, but none more ANNOYING than the african stink bug...It's a seemingly harmless bug about the size of your thumbnail that has no other purpose than to march around with its friends until the day of its death. At any given point of the day you can usually find 30-40 of these things crawling on the walls, on your shoes, in your tub and in many other places. Killing them is a mistake because of the awful stench they put off when dead so you just get used to them being around. Now in the past few weeks a transformation has taken place and these brownish, walking bugs have turned into bright green, flying, buzzing menaces! Last night we decided to take a break from everything and play a game of uno (everyone loves uno, right?) The game began and within a few minutes it was clear that we were going to have many bright green spectators overhead. But these weren't even the normal flying ones! They seemed to have been put on a mission to disturb and end our fun game of cards as each of them took turns at dive-bombing our heads (at this point there were about 15 doing this) and it seemed they were multiplying as they crawled out of the fan overhead. 10 minutes into the game our director called to check in on us and as Sal (clincal doctor) talked to Jerry on the speaker phone we went to war with the stink bugs! Jessi grabbed a candle holder, I grabbed a towel and Renee was in her battle stance...the plan was simple: I was to climb on the table and smack these things out of the air with the towel so that Jessi and Renee could crush them with fingers, shoes, candle holders, etc. After killing about 30 of these things (and causing a lot of ruckus and stench as Jerry spoke with us about ministry details...sorry Jerry!) we began to think our quest was a bit hopeless. Jerry hung up and we went back to playing cards when suddenly the next obstacle came...Zesco went out! So there we were, in pitch dark, rushing to find candles while the stink bugs took advantage of our handicap and began settling down all over the table and cards. We lit up the candles and that became the stink bugs new attraction. They would fly into the wax and then we would have to dig them out so that the candle didn't carry their smell! It was quite a comical scene! We started up the game only to stop again because of a knock at the door. It was some of the orphanage workers coming to let Jessi know that there were no candles in the orphanage (they neglected to tell her when they ran out the last time power went out) so we took another 10 minute pause to get them some light. After she returned we ended up finishing our game of uno in a romantic candle-lit fashion and just as Jessi and I were about to head home Zesco popped on and we were able to see our major mess. There were well over 100 stink bugs surrounding and covering the dinner table and we all had a good laugh about the "added factors" of playing a simple card game in Africa!
We love you guys and are glad you have enjoyed the posts thus far!
Jake and Jessi


Mom said...

OH JESSI!! I CAN RELATE!! LOL!! As far as manners..well, modeling can be the best teacher, you know. Shots... well..that is another thing. I always hated "shot day" at the Schwertfeger home. It was filled with whines, fevers, and a very tired Mom at the end of the day!! However, knowing that my children would not be allowed in school unless they were immunized,i figured I had no choice!!
Cody is the best one to tell you about blood tests, he has had so mnay of them. When he was little, he would sit on my lap while they drew the blood out of his arm. He would cry and I would cry! Not a pretty scene, but again, it had to be done. He laughs at people now who get nervous about blood work! LOL
Love you and Jake and miss you so much! Keep the blogs coming, we love to read them- there are many people reading them, but not all are leaving comments.
God bless you

Mom and Dad said...

Great article!!! Guess we shouldn't complain when we see an ant crawl across the floor once in awhile, huh? You and Jess will have a new appreciation for US bugs!! Not nearly as irritating AND much easier to get rid of!!Call the exterminator!!! LOL
We miss you and love you--looking forward to your next blog!!
Mom and Dad

Jacob Owen Fankhouser said...

Big Jacob, hello from Little Jacob Owen from Grandma's House daycare. Little Jacob was so excited to see your picture posted on the daycare wall. We hope you are having a great time and keep up the wonderful work. God Bless

Barbara Yoder said...

Your articles are so amusing. I love to read them and hear of your adventures. Better you than me. I would be held up in one room with no windows or doors. Animals and bugs are not any of my favorites.
Barb Yoder

CC said...

Both posts were very funny. I'm glad to hear things are the same as I remember. Stink bugs and all. It's good to hear how well the kids are doing too.

Mom said...

Excellent post!! I think that sometimes we forget that we can help build God's Kingdom in our daily jobs! We get so caught up in all the stress and work we have to do that we forget "who we are and whose we are". Your blogs always touch our hearts! Love to you and Jessi--Praying for you daily--miss you so much

MOM said...

Jessi!! Oh how funny! I can just see you with your skirt hiked up with a can of worms!! GROSS is right!! To the worms AND the fish!! I think I will stick to ordering Drovers wings--already cooked!! Bet you haven't lost your taste for that either!!! LOL Great article--you are such an excellent story teller!! Hugs to the new baby-
Jacob, be careful putting your beautiful wife in a lake with crocodiles PLEASE!!! I thought we taught you better than that !!!
Love you guys

Craig said...

Hahaha...I love it...I miss those candle lit nights of no Zesco. I definitely remember those nasty stink bugs congregating in the most inconvienant of places. Being able to laugh during the tough times makes them that much more enjoyable. It's truly amazing that the joy of the Lord is our strength. Stay away from the shima though. Nothing can make you laugh when that stuff gets ahold of you. hahaha....Love you guys. Can't wait to see you all soon.
Be Blessed

Mom and Dad said...

I think Dad and I get as much out of people's comments as you guys do!! So excited to see Craig's note to you. We all miss you so much. Can't wait to see all the pictures and videos!
Love to you
Mom and Dad