Well this post was supposed to start off summing of my last couple days in town but that all changed because of the events that just transpired here in the past 3 minutes. As I was laying here in my temporary room in a guest house that I have been in for the past 3-4 hours sorting through and rearranging stuff I saw a flicker from the corner of my eye. To my surprise when I looked closer it was a giant black furry spider the size of an f’n tarantula. For those of you who don’t know, I’m not a fan of bugs, let alone when they are in my sleeping environment. So as you could imagine I flipped out and threw my shoe at this thing, missed horribly and it ran behind my bags. I then stared at my bags for 2 minutes before growing up again and moving my bag, when it scuffled behind another bag, we tussled like this for another minute or so until finally, the shoe got its victory and the spider was splattered and Ajit was victorious. Hands down the single worst bug experience of my life so if you’re wondering what will I remember most about this trip you can forget anything else that may or may not happen; this will take the cake, guaranteed.
Well aside from the spider debacle I’m posting this to update you all on what has happened in the past couple days and what’s on the slate for the coming week or so. First things first I would like to thank all of you for your support in all this, I would respond back to each and every one of you comments, likes or emails but since internet access is so limited outside the main city, that isn’t really an option. That said I will say that I have read each and every comment and seen everyone who has like my posts and I really would like to thank you all, seriously. Sitting here alone half way across the world in an unknown environment where I don’t know any local language it really helps to see the kind of support I’m getting from all my family and friends on this whole endeavour.
That aside I can say that the last few days have been pretty hectic, I have slept in 3 different beds in 3 different cities and I will be following suit tomorrow night as I begin my first stage of work. So after finishing up in-country training in Lilongwe I woke up bright and early on Wednesday morning to catch the 6 hour bus ride over to Mzuzu. Beautiful bus ride where I met my first in country friend named Brave, who helped me out with a bit of cultural stuff as we talked about random stuff. The ride was marred close to the end however as we passed about 8 km of land that had been desolated by deforestation. In a country with such lush greenery, this area sure does stick out like a sore thumb. Anywho I got to Mzuzu and made my way around the market with a fellow JF and APS. We shopped around for a couple hours as I needed a bag since the bag I had bought the day before and about 5 minutes after I purchased this new one, it broke aswell…..yay…It was an easy fix though in this case so after this step we headed to the residence of another APS where we had a quick dinner, I met my coach and APS that I will be working with for the summer and I passed out early so I could wake early the next morning, review some documents and head on over to Nkhata Bay which I will be based out of for my work term. Upon arrival to the bay, I was met by one of, if not the most beautiful sight I have ever seen. This gorgeous bay with clear warm waters and lined with lush green hills, I shall show you all pictures when I get home. This sight instantly put a smile on my face as I sat down with my coach/APS (Devon) and fellow JF(John) to have a discussion about what our placements were going to look like over the next couple months. We talked for a couple hours, headed over to the District Office to speak to the District Water Officer who we are working to come to a conclusion about what I will be doing for the next couple weeks.
This coming week I will be visiting several villages to talk to community members and ask a list of questions which will help us try and better understand why boreholes breakdown and/or why they don’t get fixed. I could go into a lot more detail here but I want to avoid saying too much. I will say that this initial field research will hopefully help us in narrowing downfalls of Community Based Management and seeing what can be done to alleviate that. In the end we hope to have a better understanding of all of this, so when a donor comes into this district, they can repair say, 80 boreholes instead of the 40 they originally had the money for without actually spending any more money than they had originally planned. So that’s me for the next little while, since I will be living in a village for at least the next week or so, this will probably be my last blog post for a couple days until I can get access to internet again. Until then I would like to thank you all for the support again and ask whether or not you all like these kinds of long, detailed blogs, or short concise ones?
Ajit a.k.a. Spider Killer