Blogs from Malawi, Africa - page 9

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Africa » Malawi » Southern » Cape Maclear August 10th 2012

Cape Maclear was the original location for the mission of Livingstonia. But, it turned out to be malarial, and andthus Livingstonia was relocated further north on Lake Nyassa (Lake Malawi). It's now a backpacker heaven with the usual banana pancakes for breakfast, myriad water activities, souvenir shopping and hammocks at most guest houses with a vibe to match. Oh yes .. Bob Marley and Reggae everywhere too. Tomorrow, we plan to head to Mozambique and head towards the Indian Ocean at Mozambique Island. It's going to be at least 2 days of travel.... read more
Cape Maclear Beach
Baobob Tree
Fishers

Africa » Malawi » Southern » Cape Maclear August 9th 2012

Since the travel to Senga Bay was tough, we splurged and paid for a speed boat direct to Cape Maclear. The speed boat was an adventure in itself. Much better than paying for a zip line across Batoka Gorge at Victoria Falls. Longer than the 3 minute zip line too. When we first inquired about the speed boat, we were told it takes about 25 minutes from Senga Bay to Cape Maclear. Then someone else said it's more like 40 minutes. When we asked Captain Magic (Yes, that's his name, and the name of his boat was "Bad News"), he said it would be about an hour. We thought the lake was calm and the ride would be quite smoothe. Guess again! the beach areas were relatively calm, but the middle of the lake was windy ... read more
N.. and W.. Speeding
E.. and 1st Mate
Guest House Reception

Africa » Malawi » Central » Senga Bay August 7th 2012

Lilongwe is not the typical African capital city. It's laid back and low key. We decided to stay an extra day to catch our breath and also because we liked our hotel room so much. But, it turned out our room was already reserved. So, we went to the bus station around 11:00 and caught a half bus to Monkey Bay on Lake Malawi (Lake Nyassa). We were told it was a 4-5 hour trip. From Monkey Bay, it's a short hop to Cape Maclear, our actual destination. A half bus is a bus that seats less than 40 people and are older and less comfortable than full size buses. Only one full size bus goes each day to Monkey Bay, but it leaves early. The half buses leave whenever they are full. Full means really ... read more
Travel on Motola
Sunrise at Senga Bay
Boat Remnant

Africa » Malawi » Central » Lilongwe August 6th 2012

Following the Game Walk, we hired a taxi to take us to the Malawi border. The "taxi driver" was an off duty police officer. Civil servants are generally not paid a living wage. Most survive by charging bribes for the smallest of tasks. Others moonlight. As a bonus, the police officer was a good driver. The first hour of travel was on unpaved road, and was rough on the small car. The final leg was on fresh tarmac. After immigration formalities of stamping exit and entry visas, we got lucky when a Zambia-Malawi bus showed up at the border crossing heading to Lilongwe. Since it was Sunday, we'd considered staying at the border overnight, to give ourselves better choices at traversing the last hour and a half from the border to Lilongwe. This bus goes only ... read more

Africa » Malawi » Lake Malawi » Chitimba Beach July 20th 2012

After an interesting boarder crossing where we were almost ripped off by money changers we entered the very friendly country of Malawi. Malawi is a noticeably poorer country than both Kenya and Tanzania however the people are extremely warm and welcoming. After driving across the boarder and through numerous straw built villages we made out first stop, Chitimba on Lake Malawi where we stayed for three nights. We spent a lot of time in the local villages where we enjoyed visiting the students and teachers at the primary school and had a tour around the community health centre. The village had just had a water pumping system put in and were proud to show it off. I spent one afternoon learning to wood carve, I carved a giraffe with a little help from my 13 year ... read more
Dancing with the children
Beautiful Chitimba
Chitimba Village

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Africa » Malawi » Central » Lilongwe July 16th 2012

7/2 - 7/5 Alex and I officially started our first week of work with Fletcher at Malawi Economic Justice Network (MEJN). Fletcher himself is a well known international development research fellow at the Overseas Development Institute (ODI) in the U.K. and has worked all over the world. He is also native to Malawi and good friends/neighbors with our host mother, Sally, which is convenient for rides into Old Town where the office is located. Once in his office, Fletcher outlines the projects we'll be working on this summer. Some of which include case studies centered on Malawian access to justice, water, service provisions and human rights. We get to choose out of 10 projects that our focus will be placed on the Phalombe (Pa-lome-be) District in Malawi's southern region. This research will double for our Applied ... read more

Africa » Malawi » Lake Malawi July 10th 2012

6/28 Yesterday we received good news that our bags finally arrived in Malawi so Sally was kind enough to drive us once again. And she FINALLY explained all about last night. Apparently, her neighbor a few weeks ago overheard that we were coming for the summer and really pushed Sally to have us stay with her instead. Foreigners = $. So the woman, who locals call other women "mama", did a sneak attack move on Sally and dropped by for "some tea" but really she just wanted to see if we had arrived at her house yet. Many apologies and laughs later it was just another funny story to add to the collection of my summer in Malawi. With bags finally with us we thank Sally by paying for her petrol (gas), which until recently was ... read more

Africa » Malawi » Central » Lilongwe July 5th 2012

6/26 Salome was kind enough to drop us off into Old Town. We pass by villagers who many have walked 2 + hours just to work in the fields for the day. Alex points out a nearby prison named Maula, which happens to be the largest one in the country. Prisoners, a hundred at a time, are kept in small houses and sleep on the floor side by side living out their days. Malawi has a consistent smell of burning wood as most of the fields in small patches are being burned to rid the crops of field mice. The mice then scatter about only to be caught, dried out, and sold on the side of the road again for a snack, mmmm.... We arrive in Old Town and stop in the office where we'll be ... read more

Africa » Malawi » Central » Lilongwe July 3rd 2012

6/24 Well ladies and gents....I'm back in action! Off to the great motherland...Africa, my dream. Of course by now we know that my adventures always start off with a bang, right? No, they didn't lose my ticket to the Philippines and I don't have to worry about the only ferry to cross the Celtic Sea being out of service for the season. THIS time the fun began at flight check-in where I was told my overweight bag (80lbs) would cost me $400...but then it was $200...and then it was $100. Two attendants, one supervisor and a strong arm Irish lad by the last name of Mackey I was able to finagle one bag into two free of charge. Off I went through screening where 99.9% of the time yours truly gets "randomly" selected for world's most ... read more

Africa » Malawi » Central » Lilongwe July 1st 2012

The day I decided to leave Cape MacLear for Lilongwe was a Sunday, which is never a good day for travel in Africa. It was made even worse by the fact that Joyce Banda, the country's new female president was visiting Monkey Bay. Despite getting up early, myself and Dmitri from Belgium, had missed what was supposedly the only pick up going to Monkey Bay to Cape MacLear that day. After a while of asking around, we eventually found another pick up to take us to Monkey Bay. From there, we were put on another pick up to the junction of the road, heading towards Dedza. At Dedza, we were told we could get a bus to Lilongwe. At the junction we found a pick up going to Dedza. We waited an hour and half, in ... read more
Crocodiles
Kids on Pick Up
Waiting on Pick Up




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