The most beautiful part about the camp is the Changwena waterfalls. Yes I know, I have only told you about the river and the campsite in the last two posts. Simply because I knew it deserved a whole blog for itself, and I had to save the best bit for last. It is tucked away in a small but sweet spot, which makes it really, secretively special. Undoubtedly one of my favourite places on the planet.
I first came here back in ’06 during my class Mumpu trip. I recently dug up the photos I still have of all of my classmates and I hanging out here, and all the memories came rushing back to me like it was yesterday. I remember taking turns standing in the waterfall with my favourite friend Chich, while we took blurry photos of each other so we wouldn’t forget it. I still have those too. I also remember not wanting to leave, unsure of when, if ever, I would come here again.
Since then, each time I have been back here has been amazing. It’s not much in comparison to the many amazing falls we have in this country, but the people I’ve been here with, is what has made it one of my most cherished places.
Arriving here after being lost, is another special experience I will never forget. As I drew closer to camp that night, I knew I had arrived when I heard the river. It was the most welcoming sound, and only then did I allow my own tears to spill over as I paused for a minute. Finding comfort in hearing the slight crashing of the tiny waterfall as it cascaded over the rocks.
You make known to me the path of life; in Your presence there is fullness of joy…”
After such a nightmarish ordeal, it was a blessing for us to all go down to the falls in the morning, even just for a moment. Never have I ever been more grateful to see a sunrise. I even felt so blessed dipping my toes into the icy water. And I was especially blessed to be surrounded by shouting and laughter as the kids swam in the rock pools. After the eerily silent night, I welcomed all the noise gladly. Everything about that day felt new. A new chance at life, a new song to sing. My joy was now restored and running over.
As I sat there, Psalm 23 came to mind. And it was so enlightening to realise that I had actually experienced every single line of it.
The Lord is my Shepherd, I shall not lack.
He makes me lie down in green pastures; He leads me beside the still and restful waters.
He refreshes and restores my life; He leads me in the paths of righteousness for His name’s sake.
Yes, though I walk through the [deep, sunless] valley of the shadow of death, I will fear no evil, for You are with me; Your rod [to protect] and Your staff [to guide], they comfort me.
You prepare a table before me in the presence of my enemies. You anoint my head with oil; my cup runs over.
Surely or only goodness, mercy and unfailing love shall follow me all the days of my life, and through the length of my days the house of the Lord [and His presence] shall be my dwelling place. SELAH.