Sunday, April 6, 2008

Forest Fruits Mwinilunga

So I am in Mwinilunga, after a pretty interesting trip that involved riding 3 different buses over two days for a total of 22 hours. Only one of them broke down, but mostly they were good buses with good drivers. Unfortunately I didn't get to ride this nice looking bus in the photo.

Bus heading to Tanzania

I reached Mwinilunga at night and really had no idea what I was in for. I just knew it was far away and that the stars were like nothing I've experienced before. The milky way stands out like it is completely white, leaving the rest of the sky looking empty.

So I woke up the next morning, and this is what it looks like out my bedroom window.

I am staying at my boss' place for the time being, this is partly because I am technically not suppose to be in the country right now... at least I am not suppose to be working in the country...but if we want to be more technical, I'm not getting paid so...? Last night we hung out and made orange juice from the local oranges that are for sale on the side of the main street. Chris got a new blender/juicer as a wedding gift last November. He is from DRC (Congo) and just received his MBA.

Chris and his niece Beatrice

Evans is another guy I am working with and he seems extra nice. He is teaching me everything about beeswax and even how to ride a motorcycle.

The next photo shows what the factory looks like. More honey and bees than you can imagine. All-in-all I am pretty impressed with how hard everyone works and in general how organized the factory is. I have been able to find myself useful by helping others to understand computers and some basic circuits.

It feels really good to be out of the big city and into a 'proper' rural community. Chris knows everyone and it reminds me of living in Canmore and Chatham, where everyone knows where you live and what you're up to. I even went to a funeral already, which was quite an experience being the only white guy out of a good thousand or more people. Maybe sometime I'll explain in more detail what funerals are like here. All I know is that they are a big deal, and they happen all the time.



Anonymous said...

The night sky! That is something we have forever lost here in Calgary. I've seen it properly in the American desert but I bet its even better where you are.


Kat said...

Hey Mark,

I just tuned into your blog! I'm glad to hear that you are getting settled in finally and without any bee stings! Ha-ha. Your pictures are totally chouette (hey, that's french, remember Montreal?)

I look forward to reading your blogs. Best of luck!

Mark Hemsworth said...

indeed walking under the stars here is a great experience. The lights go out at midnight, and there isn't a town within 200km of here.

I can't see the north star, but I can see the upside down big dipper, so I can tell where it should be.