Wednesday, 14 October 2015

It’s a love and hate relationship – Malawi

I love Malawi for the opportunity of mixing with natural sustainably minded people, rather than a choice it is a way of life.

I love Malawi as I can collect energy off other people. All people were cycling with me on the busy roundabout. There were no cars on this roundabout, but many bikes just a distance from town. It was the end of the month so there was less money floating around.

I hate Malawi for the short notice I get before having 3 days without water from the mains. With the taps dry I conserved most water for tea, cooking and used small amounts to wash after exercise or decided to stop the morning jog altogether!

I love Malawi for its spontaneity, one person cancelled one big trip, I immediately make a plan for another weekend away as I had the feeling and had prepared myself from being away from the big city / small village they call Lilongwe. 

I hate Lilongwe for the regular night out events. They often become routine as there are very few places to go. This does mean that if anyone organised anything everyone joined as the community would talk.

I love Lilongwe how I can hibernate, and do nothing for the whole week if I want to. I often get my head down and work, concentrate on life, the future, read, play guitar and try and grow things in the garden. 

I love Malawi as I feel my work can make a real impact on people's lives

I hate Lilongwe to not be able to walk or cycle in the evenings as there is an official rule not to be on the streets after 9pm.  The quiet nights on the streets all backed onto tall fences go hand in hand with danger.

I love Malawi to have my own place and be able to create my own space experimenting with local materials. 

I love Lilongwe for my very pregnant friend still wanting to jog around the block for a chat, despite her being very aware everyone was staring at her which made her feel embarrassed. 

I hate Malawi for the staple diet of food: vegetables, protein soya and rice or nsima. This is a variation that has minimal change. Spices make the food more exciting!

I love Malawi for the strong bright light of the sun that gives shadows the most amazing spaces for everyone to collect.

I hate the village to be the centre of attention and the talk of the town whatever activity I did.

I love the village for the peace and quiet and deep thoughts that surround me, as the place where I first started.

As I iron my t-shirt with the steam of my kettle, I think how simple and how beautiful life is. I am blessed. Thanks Malawi.