What else is going on...I'm now on my way back up-country to Kelondu. I hope I will be there by Wednesday. I came down to Lusaka last weekend and then headed out to Chipembi, the new training site for this year's LIFE intake. The site is at Chipembi Farm College and it's quite a bit more rural than our training site last year in Chongwe. Chongwe was a metropolis compared to Chipembi. There is no transport in and out of the place other than a minibus or two, and just a small market and a few bars. It was interesting to see the new volunteers that just got to Zambia two weeks ago. I was in their shoes exactly a year ago, so it gave me a chance to reflect on the last year. I wouldn't say really that I'm much different, just tanner, not as fat, and my brain has different information in it. Really, I'm enjoying Zambia more than ever and it seems to get better every day despite challenges. The people here are just amazing and I absolutely love learning new things from them.
I did make it to Nkhata Bay, Malawi at the end of December for a week of vacation. It was probably the most relaxing vacation I've ever had. It's a beautiful corner of the world, with some beautiful freshwater fish. Lake Malawi is a hot place, and the only way to manage is to do plenty of swimming. If you ever have a chance to go there, your worries will just drop away, and everything will get a little bit clearer. After being in a place like that, I really couldn't complain about anything.
So, I'll be heading back to Lunda land for a little over a month. I'm looking forward to getting back to the place I call home and getting going on a few projects, namely my garden. We are also getting going on a pine plantation project and launching a new Women's Club in Kelondu. Everything is intensely beautiful this time of year due to abundant rainfall. The grasses on the plains are head high and the trees are a rich mix of jungle green colors. The road is now pretty terrible near my village. There are many giant puddles of foot deep water mixed with clay and sand. It has really been discouraging motorists from venturing to Ikelenge. It's tough for Ikelenge to expect any new developments in Zambia's newest district if the road is nearly impassable. Things should be improving bit by bit in the next few years. It should open up the supply of pineapples tremendously to the rest of the country.
|My kitty! I think she is about 4 weeks old in this picture, cuddling with her two littermates|
|The male in the litter looks exactly like a kabonsu (African Wildcat) so we suspect the litter is a cross between wild and domestic cat. He is very playful. My kitty is the one with the white face.|
|Our lakeside accommodation in Nkhata Bay. I was falling asleep every night to the waves lapping on the rocks.|
|Jenny, Me, Tom, and Dre hiked to the top of a mountain in Malawi.|
|Our tree planting day at Kelondu Basic School|
|Our first field trip with the Ikong'a Basic School Chongololo Conservation Club. We went to a lake just some meters from the school.|