Was a 4 day marathon of dentist visits, x-rays, cone scan, and then finally the extraction on Thursday. The normal X-rays didn’t show a problem with the painful tooth, but the Cone Scan (sort of an MRI for teeth), showed a hidden abscess that had granulated. A small part of the outer jaw bone next to the molar had also been destroyed, so no choice but to pull it. Then back to the dentist on Friday for infection prevention so that I could return on Saturday to Mozambique. Ate my fill of ice cream, and made several new friends while in RSA. Am glad to be back, as there is no place like home.
BIG BAD PYTHON RAIDS THE GOAT NURSERY
At 1:30a.m. Saturday, Eric received a call saying a large python (7 ft. or 2.2 meters) had broken into the goat corral and squeezed to death the best baby goat twins in the nursery. There are 3 night guards in the corral each night, and they immediately spotted the snake when the goats sounded the alarm.
Sadly, the babies were already wrapped in its death squeeze in the few seconds it took them to grab their bamboos and get inside the pen.
The snake made a hasty escape, taking the men on a 45 minute “flashlight chase” before they could kill it. They tell me it was quite a scary fight in the dark against such a large snake with vicious teeth. Pythons are not venomous, but they are quick and very agile, packing a bite that can rip tissue and leave a deep wound with a severe infection.
In prevention, we will be sealing the area under the 2 gates with concrete bricks, since that is how it entered the corral. The snake’s tracks showed it tried to get though the tightly woven bamboo fence in several places, but couldn’t. However, the space under each gate gets worn away by the many hoofs tracking through that small area, thus making an easy entry way for snakes and small animals. It upsets me greatly that these 2 little ones lost their life because none of us ever thought to block this off.
The saying goes: “Africa shows no mercy.” When attacked by a snake or wild animal, rarely does anyone get a second chance at life.
The Momma goat is a large meat goat who produces an abundance of milk. If held gently, she willingly donates her large bag of milk to 2 of our baby goats, whose mothers have been dry since their birth. The “real thing” is much better than the milk substitute, so I’m grateful these 2 little ones will benefit.
SCHOOL STARTS ON TUESDAY
Every mother knows how “fun” it can be getting multiple children ready for the first day of school. We get to do it with 80 CHILDREN! The next 48 hours will be packed with distributing uniforms made right on our base (3 months work), plus shoes, school materials, back packs, and books. Mozambique’s schools are in session from Feb. 4th to end of October. Our pre-school for our 4 and 5 year olds will also begin classes this week. An exciting time for everyone, especially when our 3 year old orphans decide they are old enough to attend. They are always welcome at our “Little Disciples” pre-school even though they may only last until cookie break time.
Blessings to all of you as you brave the bitter cold in the USA. We are just “wet, hot, and muddy” over here, as the rainy season is in full swing.