Monday memories: First visit to South Africa || Half a dozen tench before breakfast || Talking angling and Welsh football on Bayside Radio || My favourite movie, The Devil’s Arithmetic

Monday memories: First visit to South Africa

While in Cardiff over the weekend, it was hard not to spot the South Africans that were there for the rugby.

Whether the familiar green shirts or the distinctive accents giving them away, they were present in large numbers.

Listening to the voices in particular, took me back to the early nineties, when I made my first visit to the country.

It was when I was in a different life season, which involved church and charity work in numerous countries of the world.

My trip to South Africa was to the Transvaal (now Mpumalanga) and my first preaching engagement was in a village.

The church was extremely basic, and what was instantly recognisable as soon as I got there, was the straw everywhere on the floor.

The church was having a non-stop service that was going on from Wednesday until Sunday and so when people were tired they went to sleep on the ground, then when they woke, they joined in again.

When I got there, used to the UK, I asked how long they wanted me to preach for.

The reply was to take as long as I wanted because they were there for five days, so time didn’t matter.