Thursday, October 04, 2007

Whale Watching & Cooking Clams!

I had the most amazing experience a week or so ago (just getting around to blogging about it now!). A few friends and I went to a nearby beach called Macaneta. Someone mentioned that they had seen a whale the week before way out in the distance, really you needed binoculars to see it. I said I'd never seen a whale and really wanted to that day since they'd been around nearby. Within a half an hour, something surfaced in the water just about 20 feet to the left and about 30 feet or so into the water. I was on the phone giving someone directions and shouted "it's a whale!" And indeed it was (unlike the time I thought I saw a snake and it was a lizard sticking his head out from behind a box!)! Literally, this whale was right where the waves were breaking, as you can see in the photos. He swam around a bit and at one point almost appeared to be stuck, when he did a u-turn and eventually swam off. He was so close I could have waded in and touched him, as we thought a couple of the local fisherman were going to do! The fisherman had JUST come in on their boats, they weren't even out of the water yet. The locals said they have never seen a whale come anywhere near that close. SO, I got to see my whale and perhaps closer than I ever will again in my life! What a special gift from God to bless us like that! As I walked along the beach a bit later, it made me think that it's a bit of a picture of God. Here that huge whale was, just feet away but we couldn't see him until he chose to surface. We know God in all his power and glory is always near us but there are moments when he chooses to really make his presence known and then we are overwhelmed - amazing!

A fun way to end the day - a local man sold me a huge bag of clams for the equivalent of $5! I knew there were a lot but after steaming them in batches for the boys, and still having enough left over to make a huge batch of clam chowder for my Tias, we estimated there must have been close to 300 clams! I don't know who was more excited - the boys or the Tias! Or perhaps me - there's something very fun about steaming hundreds of clams and making clam chowder from scratch for the first time! This was the first of FOUR batches! That's a lotta clams! What a lovely day!

Five deaths in four days

I was just realizing that there have been five deaths in my little world in Mozambique in the last four days. They weren't directly in my life. It wasn't my nephew, it was Tio Joao's. It wasn't my daughter, it was Pastor Andre's. It wasn't my classmate, it was Paito's. It wasn't my brother-in-law, it was Felipe's. It wasn't my mom, it was Abelo's. I can honestly say I am grateful I haven't lost any of those people directly in my life, but it is difficult to walk through that with others, especially in such a short time.