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The Gule Wamkulu, Baboons, and Homestay: Part Three

Lilongwe, Malawi

Monday was supposed to be the start of our third camp. However, we drove an hour out into the bush, and upon arrival at the school, no students were to be found. The combination of it being a public holiday and also the very recent transfer of the school's headmaster did not help the situation. So instead of waste the day, we headed to Yossa, an orphange in Lilongwe, to play games with the children and serve them the lunch of nsima and relish. Yossa is not an overnight facility. It serves as a feeding and educational center for orphans and street children. In other words, it offers food as an incentive to get them there to learn. Cool place and offered yet another perspective on childhood in Malawi.

Tuesday was a long day at camp, as we had to teach our curriculum in one day, instead of the typical three. In place of returning home to our palatial house in Lilongwe, we ate an early dinner together at the school and then walked about 20 minutes to a local village to do homestays for the night. The village is near Mt. Nhkoma, a great hiking spot nearby. We walked through lush fields, with the mountain in the distance, to find our homes for that night. Thirty or so kids joined us in our march to the village, and we kept picking up more villagers along the way. Eight homes, very close by to each other, adopted us for the night. We had a few hours of what Price termed “Channel 3: Whitey Television” – basically meaning that we provide constant/awkward entertainment for the entire sea of staring villagers. We danced (even did a fertility dance, which the village women found hilarious) until the sun went down (aka bed time). Janie joined her roommates – chickens and peeing goats – for a restless night. The “alarm clock” (aka roosters) rang circa 4:45 am and the village began stirring at once. We said our goodbyes and headed out. Price wanted to kidnap her 6-year-old adorable brother, Edward (who appeared to be about 3 years old due to malnutrition).

So we’re headed out early tomorrow morning on a seven hour drive to South Luwangwa Park in Zambia for safari. As we’ve remained unscathed in our close encounters with baboons, pushy craft vendors, peeing goats, and a hole in the ground as a toilet, the hippos, hyenas, and the Zambian border control should be a breeze…

permalink written by  Price and Janie on January 17, 2007 from Lilongwe, Malawi
from the travel blog: Price and Janie do the World
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we apologize for some of the horrific spelling errors in here. much of this is hurried composition because of limited internet access. thanks for understanding!

permalink written by  Price and Janie on January 22, 2007

I enjoyed reading your journal. What an education you are getting. How lucky you are to experience this journey and how lucky are the people around the world to have you and all you have to offer. Enjoy the rest of your journey. Perhaps you'll make a travelogue DVD when you get back for everyone to see what you have done. You are an exceptional person ho has so much to offer.
Pam Davis

permalink written by  Pam Davis on January 22, 2007

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