Wednesday, 25 April 2012

Edinburgh, London, Jo'Burg, Blantyre

So I left Edinburgh on Tuesday at lunchtime for London Heathrow. Having spent the minimal amount of time in Edinburgh airport, I had 4 hours in Healthrow. What I hadn't bargained on was the pilot gaining time during the flight meaning i had five hours in the airport. Well what do you do with 5 hours in heathrow?  - After locating some lunch, I wandered in and out the shops (i did by a pair of shoes) then I found a chair and started to read from my new kindle.

I was surprised how quickly I got through the introduction and first chapter of the new book I'm reading! Then it was time to board the flight to Johannesburg. South African airlines are really efficient and as the flight was only half full, I managed to get a window seat and the seat next to me all to myself. I slept for most of the flight and was only sleepily aware of the turbulence, I don't think it lasted long.  I did manage to stay awake long enough to eat dinner and watch the newest part of the Twilight saga. Unfortunately I fell asleep during Iron Lady.

The wait at Jo'Burgh wasn't very long and I was soon on a flight to Blantyre. It was nice to watch the approach into Chileka and know that the easiest thing to do was to sidestep the tourists taking photos of the flags and make a dash for immigration. I wasn't quite front of the queue but I was close enough. Thankfully my bags arrived intact and I was able to meet with Moffat (taxi-driver). The drive to the airport hasn't changed  and the road to Makys is still in the same rough condition it was when I left last August.

Food as ever at Chez Maky is lovely, I had time to unpack, get myself sorted and have some lunch before Juma (one of the drivers) walked with me into town. It was thought best, so I wouldn't get lost or in-case I forgot my way around. Juma, wanted to know if I thought the walk was a long distance, I think he thought i was walking really fast.

So now I'm sitting in the restaurant, contemplating what to have for dinner, before I head for an early(ish) night and try to get some decent sleep.

Monday, 2 April 2012

Flights booked, I'm going back to Malawi for 5 months!

I've booked my flights and started packing, I'm off to Malawi on the 24th April for 5 months! This time there is a bit more to do before I go, I have to pack up my belongings and put them into storage (namely at my mums) for the 5 months away, plus I need to look for a new flat in Edinburgh! Julian at Ian Dickson was so helpful (once again) in getting my flights booked and as always made the whole process so easy!!

I'm looking forward to going back to Blantyre, despite the shortage of fuel and now sugar in some parts of the country. I'm looking forward to Passion Fruit Fanta and being able to eat Pork which actually tastes like Pork and watching the sunset from Chez Maky. I'm not really looking forward to going back onto Anti-Malarials or having to put on the mosquito repellent every night, but I'll get used to that again!

I'm sure there are a few things that I'll miss about Scotland, decent chocolate for one, the walk across the meadows, my friends, work (or rather the people at work). I won't miss the weather that's for sure!

This year I'm more prepared for having some sort of hay fever which basically means I'll wake up every morning with a blocked nose, it clears before breakfast but is highly annoying (probably more for other people rather than me).  Stocking up on tissues and water will be a priority when I arrive!! I'm taking my supply of olbas and vics with me! I'm already thinking about what weird and wonderful things I'll find in Shoprite and at Peoples!

My friend Becky has been getting me sorted on the first aid front (I've even been on a course) and thanks to Iain I am now able to use a triangular bandage for multiple first aid related issues. I thought I took a rather comprehensive kit with me, but apparently not, I just hope I don't have to use any of it!

So room nearly packed up, desks packed and cleared away and the supplies of suntan lotion have been purchased!...