Friday, February 27, 2009

Saying our Goodbyes

Last Saturday we loaded up two of the Toyota trucks with sewing machines, and the trucks and a van with the women in our sewing and quilting class, and said our goodbyes to them. Unfortunately a week has passed during which I have been unable to post a blog - my apologies to those of you who feel you were left hanging . . . The women were palpably excited when they departed, and left with promises of making many more items for sale. Alice left with the extra fabric, two new machines for her shop, and fabric to make up bags. These we will be selling to help her raise money for her new sewing school. As for us, we feel tremendously pleased with the way things unfolded. Which isn't to say that we didn't learn some lessons along the way! We know now, for example, that attending to any physical needs, including vision, must be done before any learning can take place. And that we should never assume anything - it truly was a shock when we realized that many had never used a ruler, a pair of scissors, or an iron before. We will make more of an effort to learn more of their language next time. Knowing how to say good morning and thank you just isn't enough, although they were so good at helping us out. We know now that starting a charcoal fire first thing in the morning is essential. There is much more, but I don't want to sign off before letting you know that in spite of any shortfalls on our part, Kitambaa's Sewing and Quilting Project has overall been hugely successful. What happens now largely depends on Alice, and on the groups from the different geographical areas. And we have every confidence in them. I will continue to post more info over the coming days, but this day (Saturday) has already begun, and we need to rush off to the DHL office for the black fabric which has finally arrived.

1 comment:

  1. So nice to hear there will be a next time. I've really enjoyed your blog and it's the only blog I read. From the very beginning the importance of the work, the mutual respect and friendship and the inspirational stories about each woman really had me hooked.

    I can't wait to see what becomes of this iniative and, of course, see what goods will be for sale. You might also blog about learning more of the language (hint, hint) as some people would find that fascinating as well.

    As for you, I'm guessing as much as you'll miss your new friends the thought of a hot shower with good water pressure is a happy thought indeed.

    Congrats once more, to all, for a job well done and for all that you've learned in the process!