Archive for January, 2015

Congo Christmas – Gone Bananas

Kristin King Author

IMG_0672The vendor comes down the gravel church drive to our education center. The attractive display of bananas perched on her head must weigh 30 lbs if not 40.
She is just outside the window where Bintu, Vivian and Rachel make their selections while I try to get a post to my blog up during very limited internet time.
Later the bananas are offered to me. They are strange little yellow stubs, no longer than my ring finger–perhaps 2.5 inches. Oh the taste! Like I’ve never had a banana before. There is the traditional flavor yet sweeter. What really sets them apart if the sharp tang, like the best key lime pie.
They are dangerous for someone who worked through lunch. Five are gone before I consider the consequences of too much fruit. I’m told they tried to grow them elsewhere and they aren’t the same. Even here in east Congo they…

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Congo Christmas – Oscar Bid for Movie Virunga

Kristin King Author

Screen Shot 2015-01-12 at 7.07.40 AMDriving through Rwanda to east Congo I could not get over the amount of cultivation. Miles of terraced mountains divided for maize, banana trees, cassava, beans, tea bushes (for which Rwanda is well-known) etc.–the whole countryside felt more like Tuscany than Africa to me. The only natural landscape was in the national park, and I wondered if there were gorillas in those mountains. (Spotted a monkey–video coming soon).

In the airport on the way home I read in the newspaper that movie set in the Congo has been short listed (top 15) for an Oscar bid in documentaries. To me this is good news, a film that will raise awareness about the war still effecting all the inhabitants of the Democratic Republic of the Congo. I pray this documentary takes the Oscar. The movie is called Virunga, after the name of the Virunga National Park–where the last mountain gorillas in…

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New Page Two – Back to Congo Tomorrow

Kristin King Author

Photo linked to video about this Sally Brestin Aslan painting. Photo linked to video about this Aslan painting by Sally Brestin.

These recent blogs about my Congo trip range from light hearted observations to the soul of who I am. The series gets closer to my personal space than anything I’ve written publicly before, so I thought it was time to add a Page 2 to my blog. There are two tabs for this blog now, “Home” and “Jesus Follower,” the second of which was added today. So I wanted to “Post” that info today. What you see below is exactly the same as what you see if you visit the 2nd tab.

Tomorrow I’ll be back to blogging about the Congo. Thanks for stopping by. Happy New Year!

Kristin

Maybe you’ve read something on my blog that made you wonder about what drives me, how I became a writer, why I spent Christmas in the Congo instead of with…

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Congo Christmas – The Best Souvenir Shop?

Kristin King Author

Banana Leaf Art Banana Leaf Art

My niece’s stay is shorter than mine and she is the first to ask about where we can get souvenirs. Our mission is not near a hotel, and there doesn’t seem to be a touristy part of town. When you travel far, you do want gifts to take home for family and closest friends, for whoever is watching your house or the pets, etc. Papa A and Bintu take us closer into town to a terrific little shop called Likembe Shop.

You might wonder how I knew we were closer to downtown? That’s easy. The shop was beyond where the pavement begins.

Is this shop the best? What would make me say so?

What stood out at first was the posted price list. From Crete to Tunisia, Ethiopia to Kinshasa, I’ve learned that there are tourist prices and the locals’ prices. Although all are negotiable, pale faces…

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FHA Mama Is Me – Congo Christmas

Kristin King Author

IMG_0512 Mama FHA (right) with Mama F at Lake Kivu not far from our education center.

First there were a few who said, “How can we help?” We sent Bintu home to Congo, a mission became Education ASBL.

The needs were great and the project’s impact growing. A grant was awarded. Then the few said, we can be more. We can take the whole under our wings as a mother chicken does the chicks.

Future Hope Africa became Mama to Education ASBL. “Papa” and “Mama” are titles to show respect in the Congo. “Jambo, Papa,” I say to the elder at church.

And I? I am Mama FHA. The organization is not mine, though, and not Bintu’s. This is the path God calls us to, the “goodworks He prepared before hand that we should walk in them” (Eph. 2:10). Future Hope Africa/Education ASBL is His, for His glory.

His standard, His…

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What Have I Gotten Myself Into? Congo Christmas

Kristin King Author

IMG_0666Movie night. Nuit du Film. What does it sound like to you? A relaxing evening off work?

When one of the Princesses suggests soiree du film, Bintu is reluctant.
“Why not,” I say. “That sounds great.” Our first opportunity to use the projector Jaime brought from the U.S. Girl time for this mother of 4 boys. A light, fun night off for fellowship and entertainment.
The plan is made. The Princesses invited.

Hours before the event I discover not only will I do a devotional–(No, I say. Yes, Bintu says.)–but a nuit du film is the ENTIRE night even though we chose only one dvd. We will be locked-up in our mission’s education center with one toilet, desks, chairs, and whatever blankets and pillows we carry in. Someone will be asleep on my pillow before I look for it.
Sometime during the 3rd movie, most of us begin to dose…

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