This journal chronicles the adventures of a risk-taking, wanderlusting, kaleidoscope-eyed, strong-willed, peace-seeking
explorer making moves to lead a simple, passion-filled volunteer lifestyle. Follow me vicariously through
time and space to taste a little slice of my sweet life!

Wednesday, October 26, 2016

A li'l update

Waiting for transport to haul my host's maize to market... Oh, yeah, I cut my hair..

I'm here at the Central Province office catching up on messages, research and electricity consumption! The last few months have proven to be a new scramble over the hills of service. Also, I've been climbing more hills (or mountains, as they are called no matter the size) around my area. I made it well through the cold season, which saw overnight temps of mid-upper 40's Fahrenheit. But, we've forgotten all that and now complain (just like Floridians do) about the heat of October. It's going to hit 91F today! though, soon enough the summer rains will come... For conservation farming purposes, we say to plant on Nov. 15.

As for me and my community, we have been busy with Cooperative meetings and field planning. Also, now is the time to finish up any construction projects before we enter the 5 month rainy season.
Co-op meeting to discuss a piggery project, under a mango tree at my home

 I just started my home garden nursery with seeds from the states (I hope they take!) so I can enjoy some nostalgia and variety in my diet! The field around my home will be planted with sunflowers and soybeans. Both are conservation crops which break the monotony of staple crops like maize and cassava. Sunflowers are an emerging industry with commercial use as oil, livestock and bird feed, and other applications. Soybeans are extremely nutritious and fix Nitrogen into the ground to naturally supplement the soil for the next season. I'll also grow my own maize, in part to demonstrate my earnestness to farm here.

 We recently held a youth outdoor environmental camp in our Province. We took 16 school children and 6 mentors to Kasanka National Park for 4 days of environmental education and nature tours. We had a blast! It was a fun opportunity since likely all of the children there would not have otherwise visited the Park which is just in their own backyards. We had lessons in English and Bemba and games and interactions throughout the day. We even went on safaris and saw an elephant in the near distance... my first sight in the wild and their first time ever! Oh, how they lit up with joy and wonder! At the end of the trip, all the kids had made new friends and went back to their villages to share their experience with their schools. Next, we'll have an all girls camp called, Girls Leading Our World (GLOW).

With friends, Shadreck and Ryan at Camp TREE
Next week I'll be enjoying a bit of exploration in the neighboring country, Malawi. First, we will head for the mountains for waterfall hiking, then down to Lake Malawi to snorkel the clear water and relax with a cold beverage, or three. Once in a lifetime, I will say.

Current Music: "Loving Wings" - Dave and Tim
Current Mood: Seasonal Cold Congestion