Lesotho

November 1, 2015
A speck of Lesotho
It’s hard to describe all we experienced in the last 2 days.  
Lesotho is BEAUTIFUL.
We are GRATEFUL for the honor of seeing a teeny tiny glimpse of Lesotho.

One of my prayers before coming to Lesotho was for new lifelong friendships to be forged.  Somehow, I was still surprised when the owner of this charming guest house we are staying in offered to take us to see her childhood home over the weekend.  She is Basotho and her family traditional Basotho herders.
We could hardly believe this honor.  Of course we said YES!
Her name is M’Makabi.  She is a brilliant business woman.  Her pretty daughter Esty, a post grad college student, helped us prepare for the journey.

As we followed M’Makabi’s car mile after mile after mile through rural rolling hills, rugged canyons and mountains…the Basotho people and their animals continued to amaze me.  We were so far from anything familiar- so far from any town or city- and yet, colorfully dressed children continued to show up playing along sides of these rural roads.  I observed what seems to be that most of the Basotho people are animal herders.  Herds of cattle, sheep, goats and donkeys speckled the breathtaking terrain.  Yet with each herd could be found a herder.  They dressed so beautifully- often in colorful, wool, Basotho blankets.
Our new friend directed us off of the paved road we’d been on for 2 hours onto an extremely rocky dirt road.  It felt like a mistake.  Yet, we followed in wonder…
Basotho people seem to have a strong working relationship with their mountain ponies.
Here is a speck of what was at the end of this rugged trail (Oh how i wish these pictures did more justice to the majesty of these canyons and the waterfall…)
Next she led us down into this rural town…
We had a most flavorful lunch of homemade bread, bacon, tomato and cheese sandwiches!
With our tummies happily filled,
we drove this van of sleepy, happy children after her car for a couple more hours.  Scenery continued to surprise us.  Pristine, untouched, breathtaking majesty continued as we drove two more hours towards M’Makabi’s childhood mountain home….
David has been wanting to visit the Grand Canyon for the last three years but we haven’t because we’ve been saving every penny for our adoption.  God blessed his socks off with these pristine canyons and natural wonders with 
INCREDIBLE BEAUTY.
We arrived at M’Makabi’s home at dusk.
Shepherd children immediately surrounded her home to watch our multicolored family disembark from our van.  Several of them were wearing the Basotho blankets that characterized a piece of beauty that characterizes our young perspective of these amazing people.
Our littles approached their children with shy smiles.  The Basotho children returned their shy smiles.  If only we’d been able to stay a few more days- I know their shyness would have been replaced with laughter and new friendships.
By far my favorite part of this weekend was meeting people so rich in character and strength- including M’Makabi’s uncle and elderly mom…
Joseph led me over to M’Makabi’s mom.  He wanted her to hold him.  
Our family was delighted to snuggle in to warm beds in her traditional childhood home.  The home was cozy being lit only by carosien lanterns at night.  Our children had quite an experience using the outdoor pit latrine. 
Early the next morning, women from this nearly magical mountain village could be seen walking to and from the village well with large containers balanced on their heads bringing water back for cooking morning meals. 
Mmakabi cooked homemade steamed bread which she served us for breakfast with chicken and a most flavorful tomato, onion gravy.  There were no leftovers!  YUM!
As we returned to the van after breakfast, we felt grateful and yet a bit sad to leave so soon…
She took us to a tiny mountain supply store a couple of miles away where we purchased a traditional Basotho blanket for us to remember our time there.
The homes that dotted the scenery on our journey this weekend seemed to be out of an exquisitely illustrated story book- round homes made from rocks quarried out of the mountain- most had grass tops yet some have metal corrugated roofing that shine cheerfully in the sun.  Often the homes are rectangular in shape or even more modern in appearance- yet most of those also had the shiny metal roofs.  Almost always even these more modern homes we saw in these rural herding communities had outdoor pit latrines instead of indoor bathrooms.  
Rondoval at M’Makabi’s property
view from the inside out.
See the beautiful Basotho blanket this child from M’Makabi’s home village is wearing as he herds his animals?  Over the last two days we saw hundreds of herders wearing such beautiful blankets in varied colors and designs.  M’Makabi explained that each pattern is filled with meaning.

Two young men waved as we drove away from M’Makabi’s home mountain village.
Another herding crew sharing the road.
This weekend was a gift beyond what we would have dared to hope for.  For two days, we had the honor of seeing Lesotho and got a tiny glimpse at the beauty of this Basotho nation. 

We are all wishing we could stay longer.

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