On the road again. Just can’t wait. I love to catch up with all the Zim oldies again.
I had my COVID-19 done on the 18th June, with the Assurance that I would have my results within 24 hours, and I did.
Saturday 19th June
I set off on a somewhat overcast day and a very quiet road. Ran into light rain, from about Hazyview (Kiepersol), all the way to Mica 140km further on. Roads got a little hectic on this stretch, and are taking a pounding from sixteen-wheelers, presumably running bulk cargo from Phalaborwa in the north down to the Coast.
Arrived in Musina at Joe and Hester Joubert’s a little after 15h00, with the dogs waking up the neighborhood from their Saturday afternoon nap. Not happy chappies – the neighbours or the dogs, you ask – well, both!
Leaving the truck at Joe and Hester’s (our usual Musina parking spot), we settled down with a good cup of tea and chat with Colleen and her daughter. (Joe and Hester still up country with family, on R&R).
Sunday 20th June
I got off to an early start and was through the S.A. Custom / Immigration side relatively quickly, having already informed Robert (our Zimbabwe clearing agent) of where I was. I was hoping for a similarly expedited passage through the Zim side, but it wasn’t to be, as Robert was temporarily held up. Even so, it was a hassle-free process. Now for the “Not under the Influence, just trying to miss the pot-holes” section of The Road.
Saw a number of flocks of Queleas along the way, literally thousands of them. Given their numbers, it’s a wonder I’ve never seen any of them collide on take-off or in flight. We humans could learn a lesson from these little birds.
I arrived at the Bulawayo warehouse in the mid-afternoon. Left the truck in Angela’s capable hands prior to loading up of the old folks boxes which was scheduled for the next Morning.
At the Nel’s place, I was enthusiastically greeted by Willem and the children, and was given a lesson in goal-kicking by the boys in the back yard. Needless to say, I lost to the guys again.
Monday 21st June
On arrival at the warehouse loading was so to say done with, Johan and I ran over some Issues for the round trip and by 9am I was on my way to Gweru to Boggies Trust.
Ever-grateful folks were waiting & chatting outside on my arrival, Fred and Kate Munger, Babs Coetzee, Aunt Ivy and of course Bruce Chilcott. Topic of conversation was mainly based around COVID-19 as it would appear that it is rampant over the midlands. Looking at what is taking place on the ground it would appear folks are adhering to policies re masks, sanitizer etc but social distancing – not so much (apart from the Homes I visited). On arrival at Huisversig I was greeted by happy and smiling Ricki and her husband, who is one massive man, in the words of Jimmy Dean’s 1961 hit song: “6ft-6, weighing 245 lbs, broad at the shoulders, narrow at the hips” -Big Bad John. Well had a brief chat and I was on my way.
On my way to Hubert Lee (Redcliff) I received a message from Bruce informing me of the passing of Robin Venter of Boggies. R.I.P. Friend.
At Hubert Lee, I was greeted by the ever-grateful residents who are always willing to lend a hand. They’re experiencing a Rodent problem at the centre and Improvising to rid themselves of the problem.
A quick run through to Lynnbrook (Kwe Kwe) for their delivery.
Happy and cheerful greetings from Alan Hagemann, Margot Gilby and Hendrik De Klerk. Again, talking point centered mainly around the world-wide COVID-19 pandemic.
One of the many pleasures for me whilst traveling through the country is it’s scenic beauty.
My next stop was at Westview (Kadoma). Arrived a little after 16h00 & managed to convince the staff to off-load prior to knocking off. Greeted by the usual welcoming guy’s Del. Chris Ferreira and Dannie. Folks were curious as to what the border post crossing on both sides was like and if there were any problems of which I filled them in telling them of the progress thus far and hopefully once complete the facility will be used for the purpose Intended. Once again COVID-19 was brought up along with the treatment and prevention of it and how the guys in the home were receiving the preventative treatment.
That evening I was treated to a filling hot meal by Estelle and Clive O’Reilly. We chatted about family and friends before turning in for the night. Thanks to Clive and Estelle who have so faithfully provided accommodation for ZPSF drivers over the years.
Tuesday 22nd June
After a healthy breakfast was on my way to Sunningdale in Chinhoyi. There I was greeted by what must have been most of the Ladies of the home, thanking all that give so generously both big and small to the Fund. Wishing us all Godspeed and well on the road. I thank the folks at Sunningdale for sharing what little they have whenever the truck visits.
My run through to Harare was incident-free. It took a little Longer than usual due to getting caught up behind sixteen wheelers – trucks and bulk and fuel tankers.
On arrival John and Leonie Herbst were ready for me. After a refreshing cuppa we got down to the offloading. John excused himself as he was arranging his Itinerary for a trip to the United States as Chaperone to a group of youngsters who were going on a Bass fishing competition.
Once the task at hand was done, we settled down to chat. John was obviously Excited about the competition, wanting to ensure all Requirements were seen to. I left him and Leonie to wrap up issues. I hope you guys did well and enjoyed yourselves.
Wednesday 23rd June
I took off early the next Morning for Marondera for the Banks’s and Gibson’s drop. Mrs Banks the toasted egg sandwiches were lovely – just what the doctor ordered. Genuinely appreciated, and glad to see you guys are looking strong and well. Stay well and God Bless.
Next stop, the “tea pot and cookies” home, Resthaven (Rusape), where I was greeted by the ever-grateful folks – all happy chappies. What a spread they had on the table! Once again, thanks to Gill, Lena, Sheila and all the ladies. We all tucked in to the treats. I was introduced to a guy by Stu Taylor whom I knew from way back when and I mean (kudala skat) – good to see you Bud.
Rolling out of Rusape, I was on my way to one of the most scenic parts of the country – Mutare and the Eastern highlands.
Long term ZPSF volunteers Des and Sally Bekker have been serving the local community for many years, often making deliveries throughout the region themselves. I had intended to spend the evening with them by prior arrangement, but whilst on my way to Mutare, my sixth sense was telling me to keep moving. After my arrival, Des and his guys had the truck off loaded chop chop.
Folks coming in and out whilst we were busy were talking about supposed further lockdown restrictions – is this what my sixth sense was trying to tell me?
I was on my way in the shortest possible time, not wanting to be driving after dark. Just prior to my departure, Des got news of the sad passing of another of our oldies. R.I.P. Mrs Mohammad.
Birchenough Bridge is a engineering sight to behold It stands as a proud testament to those who designed and built it. Sadly, lack of maintenance has seriously compromised its structural integrity, and it will take more than a paint job to restore it.
On Arrival at Pioneer Cottages (Masvingo) I was met by Val Hundermark. As it was getting late I left the unloading of Boxes for the next morning. I was ushered to my room and told that a meal would be forthcoming and oh boy was it a meal (Rice & Chicken Curry with Custard & Cake)! So much appreciated – thank you all!
Sadly, due to the lockdown I did not see or talk to residents during my visit.
Thursday 24th June
Next morning I was fed a healthy bowl of mielie pap and tea. Then got down to the off-loading of the boxes with Val and Johnny.
My run through to both Zvishavane to Lynne D’Ewes and Shurugwi to Muus Lodge was uneventful but I’m sure the Folks receiving their boxes are very grateful to all who contribute to the ZPSF whose vital mission would not be possible without their generous support.
Was back in Byo by 16:30, early enough to have the boxes seen to at the warehouse and for me to have my COVID-19 done, with the assurance of having my results by the next morning at eight.
Was once again spoilt with a delicious meal by Caroline & Family. The home-grown spinach was delicious, and I was able to be tuck in to a second plate.
My Run back to S.A. went very well – once I was through Zims Customs etc. I did get to spend at least an hour if not Longer on the bridge with mainly trucks going to and from S.A. (hundreds), the swaying sensation and movement of the bridge under our wheels was quite something. One could not help but think imagine if this lot goes what then??
In closing I would like all to give a thought to the plight of our oldies In Zim with the spiraling costs of living and trying to eke out a living on what little pensions they receive.
In closing the mixed emotions seen and noted at the homes, centers and cottages of all our oldies is hard to see. They live in faith, hope love and trust in our Lord and Savior.
God Bless All.
Without your donations and open hearts none of this would be possible. Thank you ALL for assisting us make this happen.
Head office South Africa contact details:
Linda Schultz – firstname.lastname@example.org – (C) 079 6082676 (T) 013 7900934
Johan Schultz – email@example.com – 082 4979328
Hannes Botha – firstname.lastname@example.org – 084 5893221
Section 21 Co Reg. 2007/034036/08; NPO Number 096733; Section 18A PBO No 930031642