Monday, 20 August 2012

Finally: A Blog Update!'

I’ve got just 4 weeks left in Malawi now and it is going so quickly! I’ve not been very good at keeping my blog up-to-date but that is mainly because I have been so busy! I’ve been doing some work for Mary’s Meals Malawi whilst completing my research. Everything here seems to take much longer – even ordering a drink seems to take an age!

I’ve also been able to have some time to visit different places and meet new people. A few weekends ago I visited Majete Wildlife Reserve. It takes about an hour to get there from Blantyre and the journey down is lovely. When we arrived we picked up a scout and set off to find some animals. Our scout was really good at explaining things – every time we spotted a baboon he would shout “Baboon Baboon.” If you have ever seen the Stephen K Amos sketch then you will understand why this made me laugh.

In between work and well work, it feels like I’ve not done very much! Two weeks ago Mary’s Meals had visitors from the Scottish Government and from the Ministry of Foreign Affairs (Malawi). I didn’t know who the Malawians were until they were leaving and I was handed a business card. Turns out; Mike is the Assistant Director and after a few emails he has agreed to be interviewed as part of my research.

Last weekend I met up with my friend Kirren, after we wandered around town, we met the other volunteers from Beehive to go to a play. The play was put on by prisoners from Zomba Prison and Chichiri Prison. It was manly in Chichewa and although I didn’t understand every word I was quite surprised at how much I did pick-up.  After the play there was a live band and lots of dancing. We started off dancing at the back and by the end we were in the middle of all the Malawians doing some of the more traditional dances.

After much dancing we returned to Chez Maky for some dinner. The idea was to eat dinner and then go to a house party along the road which we had been invited too. However we were all so tired there was a decision just to go home (which for me wasn’t difficult as I was already home). The house party was close to Maky's and the music was so loud it felt like the party was just outside my room. I did manage to get some sleep although between the music and Mosque I was awake for a good part of the night. – I’ve never wished for a power cut so much! Unfortunately we did have a power cut – just mid-morning!

Today is a public holiday in Malawi (Yesterday was Eid – the end of Ramadan). It feels strangely quiet today and even though there are people around it reminds me a bit of the Mdina in Malta (known as the silent city). I will be back in the Mary’s Meals office this week, although I have submitted the draft of the report I was working on, I suspect there will be more work to be done.

Anyway, I'm off to have some lunch and enjoy the rest of the afternoon!