Monday, April 09, 2007


Weather: After two days of heavy overcast and temps in the upper 70s, today was clear, with relatively low humidity for Liberia, and temps in the upper 90s. Light breeze from the ocean made the late afternoon delightful.

The local pastor, Augustine Zar, has become a friend of ours. He is the head pastor the church we most usually attend, and we have been a channel of your support for improvement to his church, and also to the Christian elementary school he runs. Monday, he asked us—along with Henry, Marrie and Noah—to journey with him to Kakata to visit his farm. There he and his family grow eggplant, bitterball, cassava, raise hogs, and are about to resume planting rice.

It was nice to get out of the Monrovia area, and we were treated with generosity and hospitality. We looked over the crops, visited the neighbors, and ate bitterball and palm butter. Just before we left, the clan announced it had a gift for the Reeds. We have visited before, and are becoming close to these good folks. We were touched at their thoughtfulness. Then they showed us the gift.

It was a hog. A real live hog. Of course, we had to receive it-- this was a real honor. So they hauled out of the pen, washed her up and tied her in a bag for the ride home. We named her Henrietta after her Uncle Henry. She rode with us the whole way back to Foster Town, stuffed in that bag in the back of the Pathfinder.

So, dear readers, we now have a new creature to add to the zoo. We don’t have a clue as to what to do with it, but Rev. Zar assures us he will help us out.

Getting ready for our walk to the farms. Henry and Junior, our host with Rev Zar.

Our stroll. The hunidity was oppressive.

Yers Trooly noting the difference between bitterball leaves and eggplant leaves. What a nerd.

The soon-to-be rice field. Actually, it is larger than this and will cover several acres.

After the crop tour, we vist the neighborhood. Another cooking hut. I think I should author a picture book on the cooking huts of Africa. I find them fascinating.

I like this shot. Lighting is great, as well as subject matter. We are visiting the local church-- an open palm and reed structure with bamboo pews next to the local pastor's house.

So when we got back, they were preparing the stinky lil' hog. Washing her up, though we could still smell her on the way home, even with the windows down.

Back home to the menagerie. From the bottom, Dale Rooster, Henrietta Hog, Dogs Max and Bandit, Grace Deer, and Dogs Jackie and Nikki.

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