Thursday, March 15, 2012


It is not often in this day and age that one learns a job through apprenticeship. A new hire attends a few job trainings, reads the policies and procedures manual, and then jumps in. The training for this new job of mine is quite different. What I began in January and continues until Carol retires is what I might classify as an old-school model of apprenticeship. For me, part of this apprenticeship comes in the form of a 3 week journey to Mozambique, which started yesterday. Apprenticeship happens during back to back to back to back flights where long hours are spent listening to stories and hearing about the tricks of the trade. Apprenticeship happens over long birthday dinners with dear friends in South Africa. Carol has 13 years worth of information about this job to share with me and it's something that is shared slowly and with great intention. It's fortunate then that we've just landed from a 16 hour plan ride, with more to come. This is uninterupted training time.

Carol is a fascinating woman, and if you haven't met her yet, I encourage you to fly to Africa with her (or perhaps just grab a coffee sometime). She's tough as nails, but tender of heart. She keeps lists and spreadsheets and detailed agendas, but is as fluid as water and flexible as playdoh. She always gets the job done, but never to the detriment of relationships. And she talks your ear off, telling amazing stories about songs sung in far off villages and water flowing where the land had been dry. I have been soaking it all in, or as much of it as possible between fits and starts of restless plane sleep.

During dinner tonight in Johanesburgh, I met long time friends of Carol's who had pearls of wisdom to share. This insight could only be found among those who have walkd these paths and blazed the trail ahead of me. These types of individuals are few and far between, but so precious when they are discoverved. Tomorrow, training in Maputo where I will meet Bishop Nhanala (the Bishop of Mozambqiue). She will bless our trip and send us forth into the country. This is the best job training ever.

1 comment:

  1. Wonderful for passing the torch, the peace pipe, the baton, the ...... le's name it! Hoping you are taking time to write names, places, draw notes, have digital recorder as she shares notes of value beyond. Let it all into you spine our new found friend of the Mozambican. Blessings.