A Busy Week and Cathy’s Travels

On Monday June 6th I met up for a meal and a chat with my best friend Hilary. We enjoyed a meal at Table Table restaurant, where normally the waiters and waitresses are only too ready to serve us, but we were rather neglected and had to wait to be served. We were disappointed by the service so unusually we did not leave a tip. The food was good though. Normally the service is excellent but he was maybe a new member of staff and did not know how to cope with being busy.
On Tuesday evening I went to the Local Preachers meeting, which was not too late and we had some interesting discussions.
On Sunday June 5th Cathy arrived in Baltimore America to see her friend Amanda, who had gone to live there with her American husband and her 5 daughters. Cathy surprised the elder two who were thrilled to see her. Ken joined her the next day and they began their journey by train to New York a couple of days later. They spent a couple of nights in the bustle of New York, before they took the train to Montreal; they spent an hour going through American customs followed by a move of 200 yards for a 2 ½ hour wait through Canadian customs!! Finally they did arrive at Montreal much to their relief. That was the only major hold up on their journey from America to Canada arriving in the evening of Saturday 11th June. Cathy and Ken met up with Lewis, Kate’s brother, on Sunday June 12th; they had a great day.
On Thursday 9th June we had the Guild meeting at church. The invited speakers were Mrs Christine and Canon Ed Mitchell, who were partners of Kislizi Hospital. It is a Christian Hospital in Ghana a Moslem Country. The hospital has become self supporting with visiting doctors from the UK who teach and help at the hospital. There was a lady doctor who worked in obstetrics from the UK. As it was such a long way to the hospital, where pregnant women needed to get to in case of crisis, they had built a women in waiting section, so pregnant women could travel before labour started and be there to have their babies, then they would have help in complications and maternal and baby deaths would be reduced. Families had to feed any inpatients and prepare their food, so facilities were also provided for families to prepare the food. Hospital staff only mostly earned 50p or £1 a day, so they had to grow their own food as food sold in markets was too expensive for them to buy. Ed Mitchell had come originally appointed as the hospital chaplain and his wife came as a teacher. She had taught textiles in the UK, so she taught the women how to make bags from local fabrics, which could be sold to visitors and Christine and anyone who travels there goes with gifts and returns with suitcases of bags, which Christine sells and the proceeds are returned to the hospital and the ladies who made the bags receive the money, which helps them fund their children for school and training. Each bag had the name of the person who had made it attached, so they got the money from that sale. Everything they have in the hospitals is recycled as much as possible; they are very skilled at making do and mending. I bought a few bags as presents. It was good to hear how selling the bags helped them have a better life. Christine was obviously dedicated to selling the bags for the ladies.
On Friday I helped at the Acorn Centre as usual and it was an enjoyable afternoon. On Saturday morning we had a coffee morning at Oatlands Community Centre, our former chapel and raised money for Marie Curie cancer. Joan and her boyfriend organised a comic sketch about the royal family fighting over the succession to the Queen! It was quite amusing. Apparently Joan and Mike had written the sketch and performed it at the group for bereaved over 55; they now run the group, which is self funded after the funding stopped. They all have fun together.
I met Beth for lunch and we had delicious homemade pear and parsnip soup and a cake. I had a vanilla slice which is a treat and Beth had a lovely freshly made gluten free cake. We dined at Truffles which was very busy, so we just had time to go to the theatre to see ‘Annie’ the musical, which was Beth’s birthday present to me. It was great fun. Having family treats are the best birthday gifts. It was a brilliant surprise.
On Sunday there was no service at our chapel as it was a joint service for the Queen’s birthday but I did not go, as suddenly my busy week had caught up with me and I needed to rest.

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