The Swazi-wood Leadership Summit Journey Begins!

Day 7 – Thursday

6:46 am  Leave for Safari

8:05 am  Finish signing wavers (stating that the park isn’t responsible if we get eaten, mauled or otherwise torn-to-pieces)…and leave on Game Drive at Hlane Park.

8:38 am  Almost run over a lion it’s so close to the road!

8:54 am  Cross paths with a few rather ‘frisky’ (shall we say) elephants who are a little annoyed with our presence and make a good show of it.

10:01 am  Impala’s and warthogs are easier to find, but Rhino’s are a bit of a challenge today.  We spot our first pair and our guide decides it’s time for us to see if we’re ‘men’ or ‘cheese-girls’.

We’re men!

10:15 am  Find more rhinos and some giraffes.

10:38 am  Leave for quick drive back to Manzini.  (Ncobile is driving…it’s quick…but safe!)

11:57 am Meet some of the Swazi-Wood Summit Team at the Team House and pack up a 20 passenger bus, 9 passenger van and two SUV’s to leave for JoBurg.

12:48 pm  After a quick prayer we leave for JoBurg.

6:08 pm  We drove thru a horrendous thunderstorm and thick rush-hour traffic on the 10 lane freeway…but finally made it to our hotel.  Some of those on our team have never been to JoBurg…so there are some wide eyes.  (Heck…i’ve never been to JoBurg…other than the airport…so i’m pretty wide-eyed myself).

7:00 pm  We pile back into the vehicles and head to McDonalds.  Swaziland doesn’t have  a McDonalds so this is kinda special.  Ordering is fun as there are 33 adults, 4 kids and a baby in our entourage. (Although the baby didn’t order).

7:25 pm  The first of the team-meal receipts is a bit of a shocker.    $1930.00!

Actually…it’s South African ‘rand’ which take 8 to make one Canadian dollar…so our bill for all of our ‘super-sized’ meals is actually about $241.25

Riverwooders have given or pledged enough to take care of…

–  25 Global Leadership Summit conference registrations

–  Travel for the group of 38  (they have ‘intern/students’ and Kriek’s mom and dad who will be taking care of the kids while we’re in conference)

–  Hotel accommodations

–   There’s a coffee/cappuccino/hot chocolate machine in the hotel lobby so i told everyone they can have x2 a day and charge it to our room tab (they are 7R per drink or just under a $1).  Want to find every way possible to bless this group while we’re together.

–   Meals (breakfast is provided by the hotel in our room fee, lunch is provided as part of the conference registration and we’ll take care of dinners).  Tomorrow night will be special as Jumbo has us booked into a buffet.  Saturday night we’re going to give everyone 200R and let them buy dinner and take in a movie if they want to.  Then we have a special surprise for Sunday.

Already this group has extended, on a few occasions, huge Thank You’s to each of you and Riverwood Church for your generosity and partnership…and for making this special experience possible.

So, we’re leaving at 7:45 am tomorrow to head to the Summit.

i’m really looking forward to our time of learning, stretching and honing our leadership gifts…together.

It’s getting late here and we have a big couple of days ahead of us…so i’ll sign off for now.


– Todd

6 thoughts on “The Swazi-wood Leadership Summit Journey Begins!

  1. Looks like you got to see most of the animals. That’s great …. especially for Cam!

    “Swazi-Wood Summit Team” – Love the name. I’m beyond excited for the exposure everyone will have tomorrow and Saturday. Way to go Todd and Cam in leading them to this Event! I am so proud of you guys and our church for making this all possible!

  2. I am SO pumped for the Swazi leadership team (Todd & Cam as well 🙂 ), to be able to attend the Summit in Joburg!!! I am SO thankful we are able to bless them in some way….especially for ALL OF THE WORK THEY DO!!!!!! BIG HUGS to ALL of my Swazi’s!!!!!! 🙂 🙂 🙂

  3. I was moved to tears reading this post. It is so awesome that they can be blessed in this way. Thank you everyone who has and is making this possible. You have no idea what an impact this will have on all of their lives.

  4. Yay! I’m excited to experience our Summit here next week but I am so excited that everyone on the team there is getting this teaching and encouragement. The things Hod will do through these leaders is going to be big, I know it 🙂

  5. Todd, are you sure it wasn’t 6:09pm when you arrived in Jo-burg? 🙂 In all seriousness, it is wonderful to see how both you and Cam have been able to bless the “Swazi-wood” leadership team and I’m sure it will be a wonderful experience for them at the Summit. Keep up the good work and God Bless you and all those in attendance.

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