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A Christian Living Article from All-Creatures.org Guide to Kingdom Living

True Christian living requires us to live according to Kingdom standards which bring Heaven to earth.

FROM Neville in Kenya, Wednesday 1st November

It was like Christmas here yesterday! We received a number of parcels and packages - 3 from Elaine containing lots of lovely new teethers that are going to make many babies very happy, another from Dora containing a few more teethers plus a few little things for Lilley, 2 from Margaret with some beautiful baby clothes and a really cute 'cat hat', and a big box from Ursula with all sorts of wheeled toys (which I had a good play with!) and a host of little teddies, and books, and felt tips, and crayons, and pencils, and erasers etc. Oh yes, and some more magazines from Alex. So Royal Mail did a good job of sending that lot on without extra charge (unless there is a bill following!), in spite of their official regulations. And thanks very much to those who sent - and for the notes and cards enclosed. We will follow the instructions for distribution where given. If anybody has parcels on the way there seems every hope that they will come courtesy of RM.

The slight downside is the procedure. On Monday Mark found a yellow slip in the PO Box saying that there were some packages to collect, so he took the slip to the Post Office counter as per usual procedure. However they said there would be some customs duty to pay and he had to go to another PO department where the Customs officer opened the packages in front of him and Mark helped them to value, or rather undervalue, the contents. Of course he protested that they were for charity, orphans, etc. but no good - "everybody has to pay". So then he had to go to the Customs office in another street to get the forms filled out (in quadruplicate) then back to the PO depot for their final completion. Then he had to take the forms to the National Bank to pay the duty. Only it had turned 3 pm by then and the bank had closed so the process had to be completed the next day, yesterday, Tuesday. We went with him for the experience! Having paid the duty in at the bank we then took the receipt to the PO parcels depot where we were able to collect the goods, on payment of the PO handling fee. The charges were not large - 3.60 for the Duty and 4 for the Post Office charges - but the main problem is the procedure which though described in a few words above actually takes hours. Mark tells me now (!) that he once had a parcel from us that took 3 weeks and numerous visits to the Post office to retrieve! The Customs Official had to come to the PO to inspect and on several occasions he just never turned up when arranged so M had to keep going back. So it was lucky this time that he was already there. All things considered though we think it will be better in future to stick to the Royal Mail's new definition of a 'Large Letter'. Otherwise larger parcels should be sent direct to Fowler, PO Box 13200, Nakuru, Kenya, which is very expensive by airmail and takes at least 6 months by sea (to Trinidad, West Indies in the late 1950's it took 3 to 4 weeks! There's progress for you.). It is a great pity, but quite frankly, cheques are easier!

Kind regards to all,
Neville

P.S. It is now Tuesday 7th. November and we have been unable to access emails, both aol and wananchi, for a week thanks to the phone company. I am very sorry this email is so delayed.

IT WILL BE VERY HELPFUL IF FROM NOW ON YOU CAN WRITE TO US ON [email protected].  IT IS VERY MUCH CHEAPER TO ACCESS HERE THAN OUR AOL ADDRESS. AND ALSO WANANCHI.ONLINE PROVIDE A GOOD SERVICE WHICH FROM AOL IS NON EXISTENT HERE. IF IT WERE NOT FOR WANANCHI WE WOULD NOT BE BACK ONLINE NOW, AND THEY CHARGED NOTHING! BY THE WAY THERE HAVE BEEN NO FURTHER PARCELS SINCE LAST TUESDAY. MAYBE THE P.O. ARE SAVING THEM UP AGAIN BEFORE TELLING US.

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