26 Sep

Trip to Ghana in 05

I was checking out some old files on the hard drive and stumbled across this piece I wrote after my Trip to Ghana with a team in 2005.  It’s funny, 7 years later reading about the struggles, it all seems so familiar!  This was also the summer we won the Olympics and there were bombings on the underground system in London, both of which happened while in Ghana.


1WYnet Co-ordinator

2 Trainee leaders

4 Student missionaries

1 Team

1 God

1 Word




3 Days of training

1 12 Seater minibus

#84 British Airways to Accra

1 15 seater minibus

1 Team

1 God

1 Word




6 Days in sanko where

4 Projects are run 2-gether in all things

½ the normal time required 2 get those projects done.

1 Team visiting

1 team working

1 God

1 Word




2 Taxis 90 minutes late

2 Trotros 2 changes to make

280 minutes on the road1 large mountain to climb.

2500 ft up

1 guesthouse

1 new project to get started

1 Divine Munumkum

10 days

8 villages to visit

1 Team

1 God






0 Curtains

0 Flushing Loos

0 Taps

0 fridge

0 aircon units

0 TV

0 radio

0 babies to tickle

0 reception on my phone.

1 dead paramount chief

1 case of malaria

3 days of treatment

0 malaria

4 dodgy stomachs 2 many mouth ulcers

500 litres of water drunk

0 enthusiasm


1 God

almost 1 team



8 Villages visited

1 message from divine

“This is your project not mine, I want to help you get your language written down and eventually translate the scriptures”

7 white people causing a stir

1 message from Divine

“These friends have come from the uk to help you with your project.  To Pray, To visit and maybe help in others ways that none of us understand yet”

8 Enthusiastic Villages

7 enthusiastic white people

1 very enthusiastic divine

1 humongous send off

1 paramount chief stand in for the send off

1 New project started

1 team

1 God

1 Word

27, 000 people a set closer to getting that word in a language that speaks to their heart.




18 Sep

Prayer event 11th November 2012

Cool event coming up hosted By Wycliffe UK:
We are excited to invite you to Pray 10/11/12 – a day of prayer that Wycliffe Bible Translators is holding simultaneously in Coventry, Belfast and St Albans from 10:30 am to 3:30pm on Saturday 10th November 2012. The day will be fast-paced, interactive and informative, where you can discover how God is working around the world bringing life and hope to millions, and pray for those involved.  More details are available online at wycliffe.org.uk/pray101112, and on Facebook.

If you can’t make it to any of these locations there will be information on the Wycliffe Bible Translators Facebook page on the day to guide you in praying at home or in a small group.


Would you please consider including the following text in your church’s Sunday bulletin to advertise the event?

You are invited to Pray 10/11/12 – a fast-paced and informative day of prayer that Wycliffe Bible Translators is holding in Coventry, Belfast and St Albans on Saturday 10th November 2012. Come and discover how God is working worldwide, bringing life and hope to millions, and pray for those involved.   The event is free, but please register online at wycliffe.org.uk/pray101112facebook.com/WycliffeBibleTranslatorsUK/events.”

Many thanks and we look forward to seeing you there.

15 Sep

Foody Friday – Ham

I really enjoy Nigerian food, especially the street food (more on that another time ), but one thing I really miss from England is cured meat.  You know, ham and bacon and even sausages.  There is one place you can get ham and bacon, but it is over an hour’s drive away and not cheap when you get there.  Even I am not that desperate for them!

So I started to research (another of my pet hobbies, researching things on the internet.  Wow, I sound sad!).  I found out that making ham and bacon was remarkably simple, but to make it really safely you needed something variously called: pink salt, Prague powder, Instacure.  Nothing daunted, I asked Mum and Dad to bring some out with them.

Then last weekend I persuaded a friend of mine to come with me to the abattoir so we could buy the meat.  The abattoir is quite an experience, not for the squeamish or faint hearted.  We went on a Saturday morning which is the only time you can get pork.  All the meat is laid out on tables in the open air, it helps with the smell but not so much with the flies!  You can buy any part of the pig, from the whole head down to the trotters, not forgetting the lungs, intestines and stomach on the way.

I bought two big chunks of pork loin (thighs of the back legs as I now know) and half of the pig’s small intestine.  One chunk (with the leg bone still in and skin still on) was destined for a ham and the other (bone and skin removed) for making into sausage meat (more on that another time).  You can probably guess what the intestines were for, if not, I won’t spoil the surprise!

I dealt with the ham-to-be by mixing up a cure (½ cup salt, ½ cup brown sugar, 1 teaspoon pink salt and enough water to cover the meat), sticking the meat and cure into a plastic tub and putting a small, heavy bowl on top of the meat to way it down.  For those who like science (which I most definitely do!), the salt and sugar content in the cure increases the density of the liquid so that it is actually more dense (a greater mass for the same volume) than the meat and as a result the meat will try to float unless you weigh it down with something like a bowl.

I put the ham into the fridge where it would lie for 5 days in its bed of brine.  Once well rested from its snooze I pulled it out and rinsed it off, soaking it in fresh water for a few hours.  The consistency of the meat was now much less squidgy (a good scientific term that!) but it still had a nice pink colour thanks to the Prague powder.

Next I boiled it for an hour and a half with some onion, cloves, peppercorns and a bay leaf, then pulled it out of the pan, poured a glaze (another random thing inherited with the house) over it and stuck it in the oven for half an hour.  Pulled it out, tasted a slice and got very excited!  Not only did it look like Ham and smell like Ham, it tasted like Ham!  We had ham sandwiches that night, deeeeelicious!

There is also a very similar process for Bacon – find a nice cut of meat, make up the cure – sure it – the slice it and cook it.  we have some with egg in English muffins the other morning they were AMAZING!  In a couple of weeks I’m going to get together with a few toher interested party and have a big ham making fest.


11 Sep

Oh when the saints.

There are so many things that you see in Nigeria that you wouldn’t see in England. Today’s treat was a funeral procession in pick-up trucks on the main road. The first truck and a bunch of what I imagine were boys’ brigade lads trying to persuade the traffic to part for them. The second truck had the coffin and the third truck had more boys’ brigade lads, but these ones were armed with trumpets and drums and were merrily playing away as they came up behind us and eventually passed us. We often laugh at the things we seen in/on cars and trucks on the road this but was a very different attitude towards burying the dead.


Photo courtesy of Sharon Sweeting (Blue house rules!)

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