Sunday, March 28, 2010

Going to the Dogs

We all wonder every day, every year if the hospital and the theological college -- and our patients and students -- will survive. We all wonder about that especially during the month the Hardisons return to the U.S. for their annual leave. Somehow, some way, God intervenes and things do work out. "Maseno Missions" is not going to the dogs. I am. And I am delighted.

Some of you know that Simba, the Hardisons' "lion" of a dog (who is actually a big pussycat), has been their constant companion for eight years. He has warmly greeted many a student and visitor -- just as he has unwittingly intimidated many a toto (child) and askari (guard). Some of you also know that Little Brown, a neighbor's pup, adopted the Hardisons a few years ago when word leaked out in Maseno that the wazungu of St. Philip's were as generous with their "Nice Biscuits" as with their overall Christian hospitality.

No one will ever be able to substitute for Nan and Gerry anywhere, of course. But in their absence, I can at least feed and brush and "love up" Simba and Little Brown. So, in a few days, I will move 3 kilometers to St. Philip's to dog-sit. Since I'd been hoping to go on retreat, as a sort of transition between Kenya and my own home leave in the U.S., it will be a particular pleasure. God ("dog spelled backward," as my kids once reminded me) does work in mysterious ways.

Please pray for the Hardisons' safe travel, quiet respite and merciful return. May we all remember the blessings of Holy Week, dear friends, this Palm Sunday and every day of the year.


tinkerbug said...

What a wonderful way to bridge the gap of Nan and Gerry's absance and your transition! Don't get too attached, though, or you'll suddenly be bereft! I remember having my grandcats for "summer camp" at our house one year, and I particularly remember how much I missed them when they went home...

Dianne, Dee, Mom, Granny said...

I'm afraid I'm already too attached -- to everyone and everything in Maseno! I'm also, however, remembering Elliot's sage advice over the years: "OPD, Dianne. OPD {Other People's Dogs}." Both bereft and blessed, I give thanks for family and friends like you!

Nancy Rowe said...

Well enjoy your "retreat" at St. Philips....know your hospital friends will miss you. But it is a lovely setting, and times. :-) ...ok, minus the funerals, etc, etc... May the Lord bless the Hardisons tho with safe and restful travels. They deserve it!