We had a good day today. We picked up the mail and got the certificates for our TEP as well as for 2 Elders. We came home and got the passports and went to Immigration and got them stamped. That makes us all legal here for two years - not that any of us need the full two years but that is how much time they give on a TEP.
We also went and bought cleaning supplies and toilet paper for the Blantyre chapel and dropped that off for them. We then went for lunch at a place we were told about and it was really nice and the prices were reasonable (about $12 each). We will go there again sometime. After that we met with a landlord of two of the flats that we rent for missionaries and renegotiated on one flat for the next year. Normally here they raise the rent 20% each year due to inflation etc. He offered to only raise it 10% since he likes renting to us (he always gets the rent) and we have had the place for several years. After some discussion we renewed for another year at the same rate as last year - no increase!! We also pay the year's rent in advance. Other rentals we pay 6 months or 3 months at a time -- never monthly. Just the way it is here!!
We did a bit of grocery shopping today. We are getting a little more used to the food choices and I suppose we are learning that to some extent we have to not look at the prices. A can of mushroom sauce (kind of like a soup) is about $3.50 -- but it does add a little moisture and flavour to our chicken so we buy it now. We even bought some T-bone steak today and will try it for supper. Beef just really hasn't looked that appealing here but today it looked and smelled a little better in the meat department. We also bought a small beef roast. Up to this point we have only bought mince (ground beef) and chicken so we will add a little variety to our diet today. :)
We also bought a bit of cheese that is made here and will try it out. The cheddar that we got before was from South Africa and it was really good but they don't expect to be able to get any more for 2 or 3 weeks (which probably means 4 or 6 weeks).
We also filled up our tank and a jerry can with diesel today and there was no line-up. I think we were just really lucky as most of the service stations still have none. We did learn today that it is easier to get diesel than fuel (regular gas). We also learned that this shortage will likely last through December and it will get worse because about August the Tobacco season ends and there will be even less Forex (foreign money exchange) coming into the country and that seems to determine how easy it is to bring in and pay for fuel.
The Zone leaders are coming over this evening so we can discuss any issues and know what is happening.
Just got a phone call and must go meet a landlord of another flat. She wants to see us for some reason. :(
Love, E/S Bullock