The sun is coming up in Ethiopia as I slowly unwind from an exceptionally busy week in our West London parish and wait for my connecting flight to Kampala, from where my companion and I will be driven eight hours across the Equator to the remote destination of Rukunguri .
Yesterday had a series of comedy trials: part of my front tooth (crown) dislodged over breakfast – so quick dash to emergency dentist before school assembly starring child 2 and his class. Then watch his performance repeated twice as the school hall is so small, and return to find a plumber simultaneously accessing our basement and loft in the vicarage. He ended up spending 8 hours on a job that was simply to fix a radiator to a wall, but due to the antique vicarage heating system meant every radiator in the house also had to be drained.
Communion set up, service and church cafe lunch with Nicola beckoned during her sermon writing break, but none of that before someone accosted me wanting a house blessing to drive out an evil or sinister force in his daughters house, and offering to pay me in advance, all while I was holding an upset toddler. Some young women from South India joined in the 1662 Book of Common Prayer service having popped into church for a minute – their first visit to a church, and our young preacher introduced herself as an ‘outturn’ – apparently the new name for the year after an internship! A few more mishaps punctuated the day with gaps filled by emails, packing and setting up a Facebook support site for clergy couples, before fielding an irate call from a neighbour of someone I’d just arranged a visit to asking why we hadn’t visited. I’d clocked the day before that I’d managed to fit in 50 hours work Sunday-Wednesday in an unusually busy spell but in clergy life the job is inevitably never done.
The TV engineer arrived as I was leaving for the airport so the babysitter was left sorting that and the kids tea out while Nicola was busy with child 3 at a school social event.
So a very smooth ride to the airport, swift check in and enjoyable pub meal was all gratefully received at Heathrow thanks to Simon and his lovely wife who chauffeured us.
Emily whom we are visiting is staying over in the Capital – Kampala – to meet us, but has just posted that she is having worse fortune… a man has banged her car while moving and stolen her sidelight
A man ran past, hit the side of the car as we were moving slowly, it made me jump. Then when I get out the car later, I see the light gone. very professional. Hope it’s worth the money he gets for it. 😦
all that awaits… for now I’m listening got Martin Smith on my headphones almost drown out a screaming baby at the departure gate.