Experiences from a pure bred N'Sungu
Lilongwe Travel Blog› entry 2 of 2 › view all entries
Wawa! Muli bwanji? Ndili bueno kay inu zikomo? Tionana! Basicallyâ€¦ that is what HAS to be said about twenty odd times every five minutes walking through
If you wanna be a celebrityâ€¦ come to monkey bay. White people are rare and non-existent here. It was a four hour drive from the airport to the houseâ€¦ we saw two white people. In my whole stay so far Iâ€™ve seen one other, not a volunteer. Therefore, everyone wants to know us. Everyone asks us our names, everyone asks how we are and EVERYONE stares. I donâ€™t know how Iâ€™m going to cope back in
The journey here was pretty much the longest of my life. Met two other volunteers in the airport, Katie and Fiona, and we just panicked amongst ourselves about what lay ahead. Ten hours to get to Kenya, but I was sat next to an African man who told me of times he â€śdanced the night awayâ€ť and Jennifer, a Spanish translator, so that cut the time down a bit. At our stop off in
We finally got to the house. There are about 15 of us volunteers and about as many staff. All are lovely. We have cooks, cleaners, gardeners and even guards at night. My favourite is Computer, the chef. He makes the weirdest noises, but great food. Weâ€™re right next to the beach as well, right on the lake, but night swimming is utterly silly. We have hippos. You can hear them now and again at nightâ€¦ they round the corner in some reeds but at night they go wandering. We have power-cuts now and again, where the water goes off too, and rats that arrived in the curtains the same night I got here, and cold showers, and everyoneâ€™s feet are constantly dirty, but I love it here. It is actually immense. Iâ€™ve never been anywhere where the people are so amazingly friendly. Brothels probably couldnâ€™t beat these people in friendliness stakes.
My first full day was just an induction and heading into the town. Girls MUST wear knee length skirts. I have none. Who on earth DOES?! Soâ€¦ I now have a standard colourful wrap-around skirt that clashes with everything. I fit right in. The second day I was up at 5.30 to get in a Masungo, the local transport (a flat-backed truck) to go to the orphanage. Our mini-bus was broken. There were ten of us in there. Apparently they can fit thirty-three in. Monkey bay orphanage was immense. It was a house, actually made of brick (rare in
The afternoon was wound clinic. Me and another volunteer were in charge at the clinic of treating all wounds that people came in with. Over two hoursâ€¦ we had one patient. We cleaned and bandaged a boy. Apparently the average is no patients. It was a taster though. Weâ€™ve put up posters advertising the clinic in the villages, so soon, we will have bloody and hurt Africans banging at our door. I genuinely thought that Iâ€™d be just stuck in an orphanage here, but no, apparently Iâ€™ll be in the hospital, spraying houses for malaria, holding HIV/AIDs groups and teaching orphans. As well as wound clinic.
The weekends are ours. Excursions aplenty. This weekend weâ€™re off to a far off city to watch
Also, one of the volunteers here is an ex-medical professor at
Anyhow, Iâ€™m having an immense time, Iâ€™ve met so many new people and just having a bloody decent good experience! Still, missing people every now and again. Sorry if I just sound like a bit of a brag too. On that note though I saw my first monkey today. :p
Much love to all back home!
The 5ft something hapless traveller