Wednesday, January 28, 2009

Epic Adventure with Weibs

January has been a busy month and my blog has been severly neglected but thanks to some accountability from Suzie Rodgers and Megan Norton, I'm finally updating!

Last weekend, me and my friend Paul Weiblen decided we needed a guy's day of fun and it all started with the idea of going in search of the Oprah Winfrey Leadership Academy in South Africa. First, let me introduce Paul, or as I like to call him, Weibs.

One thing that's been difficult here is being the only single missionary guy in Joburg. Don't get me wrong, I love the friends I have and the relationships I've built with my team but for me, I need the fellowship of other guys who are in the same walk of life as me. Paul is a journeyman in Rustenburg, about two hours north of Joburg. We connected on Facebook, met a few weeks back and were instant friends.

Paul and I split MK duty at Strategy Leaders training that's been held at the Baptist Camp in Roodepoort. I worked the first half and Paul has been working the second half. He came down and stayed the weekend with me in Joburg and we designated Saturday to be our epic adventure.

After breakfast at Mugg & Bean, we set out in search of Oprah's school, which is in Henley On Klip, SA. We didn't know how far away it was but in less than an hour, we found it! The school was locked up like a compound, of course, but that didn't stop us from taking some photos in front of the sign (see below).

Although going to Oprah's school was pretty epic, it wasn't epic enough so we chose to head back to Joburg for a visit to the Crocodile and Reptile Farm. Call me crazy, but I've always been fascinated by reptiles since I was kid, especially snakes. We got to hold a one-month-old Nile Crocodile, a hairy tarantula (which was a big step for me because I'm not a fan of spiders) and best of all, an albino python.

We took a tour of the park and saw Nile crocs ranging in age from one year to 60 years. We happened to be there at feeding time so we watched the crocs feast on dead chickens and rib meat from whatever larger animal died the previous week.

We topped off the epic adventure with lunch at the Gourmet Garage in Montecasino and Paul stocked up on Dr. Pepper and A&W Root Beer (which is imported from the States and only sold in this little American trading shop for about $1.50/can).

For two single missionary guys, our adventure was no less than epic. Hey, we are easy to please! Enjoy the photos...

Oprah Winfrey Leadership Academy

Weibs and I at the school

Weibs has a crush on Oprah

I have a crush on South Africa

Road into Henley On Klip where the school is located

Me holding a baby Nile croc

The bearded lizard

Weibs and the baby Nile croc

The albino python!

I'm thinking about adopting her so Jeff and Nick can have a roommate when they come visit

The tarantula (I'll admit, I was a little nervous with this one)

Ready for lunch!

Dining on chicken