April 1, 2002 - Part 4

The weather has been fairly calm, except a couple of big storms (one of
which is starting up now). The rain falls very hard and very briefly.
The thunder and lighting are incredible. I've never seen such
interesting storms. They are so awesome that they are a bit
frightening, but mostly I enjoy them. I am so thankful for the
temperature drop and the entertainment. I love most of all falling asleep
to the sounds of a storm drifting away.

Dad, thanks for the Mavis Beacon for my classes. To clarify for those who don't know, Mavis Beacon is the name of a
typing tutorial that comes with windows. It is a great way to learn to
type. It is very interactive and fun. There are great games like car
racing. You can only go as fast as you can type and when you mess up
you get a dent in your window. Dad has actually sent me a copy, so
soon my lessons will involve much less of my attention. I will just let
Mavis Beacon take over.

I think I was very well prepared for this trip. My essential clothes
collection has matured a lot. I bought a second-hand outfit for 4 pounds
in London, which was a great buy since my dying green pants have formed
another, much larger, whole in the rear. I have given them to the
tailor who said he could fix them. The hat Max gave me has saved me
from sunstroke a few times. The long boat rides without a hat can be
very dangerous. I do wish I had some more Body Butter (This is lotion
from the Body Shop). Mom was right, everything is very dry here, and
I'm already half way through my six months supply. I bought new boots
before I left, which are great in the bush, but a lot of the time I
don't wear shoes.

The lodge is connected with many white sand paths
that feel great to walk on, except midday when they are scorching hot.
I have not been sunburnt since my first week. I mostly try and stay out of
the sun, and when I go out for a long time I meticulously layer on the
factor 30 sunscreen. I already have twice the freckles I came with, and I'm
perhaps as brown as I have even been. I am also losing weight fast,
losing the chub I got after eating Dad's meals for five months. In
fact, I bet I look pretty good, except there is my “growing out” hair cut
that looks strikingly eighties.

With that picture in you mind, I will leave you. It has taken me two
nights to answer all those questions. I even managed to stay up past
ten! I've really enjoyed babbling away. Out here it is nice to babble
to even Microsoft Word. I hope this gives you all a clearer picture of
what I am doing. Tomorrow I am finalizing the guest menu for Easter
weekend. We are having the lodge owners in Lilongwe that Patrick hopes to
create an agreement with, and we've really gotta impress them. I'll
probably be in the kitchen all weekend practicing recipes, mostly
desserts, but also some homemade corn chips, banana bread, and I have to
present the fajitas for Patrick to taste. Stuart thinks it would make a
great dinner for the guests. Take a bow, Dad!

The storm is really close now. 1...2... BOOM! Yep, getting closer...
All the sounds change; there really is a quiet before the storm. I am
going to run off to my chalet and try not and get caught in the rain.

I love you all!

PS. Dad please send this on to Erin, Baba and other interested family.
Thanks! And can you tell Erin that I got an email from her, but it was
accidentally deleted with some other emails of mine :( Tell her I miss
her and I want to know what she is up to.) I miss you all!!!!!! Lots of

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