We have not heard from Victor for awhile, and there is a frightening reason, serious illness.
In late January Victor had a recurrence of malaria. He was at the farm, where he was forced to lay in bed for two weeks before he was well enough to go to the hospital, where he remained for another two weeks. He is just starting to get out of bed and exercise when I talked with him on Friday. Most likely it was something else besides malaria, but in Zambia, with its very functional health system, there is less emphasis on diagnosis and more on treatment.
But he has been in contact with our village by cell phone. The good news is that the rain has been unstopping, resulting in great maize growth. This means a bumper crop. The rain even washed off the army worms and drowned them!
The bad news is that all the roads are washed out, so the van has to take a circuitous route to Mwachilele School, and the Chilupula villagers have to wade through the mud to the school to catch a ride into town.
The school is waiting for Victor to return to finalize the drilling of a new bore hole. The drilling company has not been able to extract the two pumps they stuck in the old bore hole. The Government has still not released the report on the well, but with the rains, it is not as critical as when we started the project in the middle of a drought.
Victor will attempt to return to the village Friday of next week. I will have an update after that visit.