planting seeds

October 22, 2010

Travel in Zambia means, for me at least, a blur of intensity: intensity of experiences, of colors, of life itself. In particular, this adventure has been largely spent involved in grassroots projects, getting my hands dirty [ok, so maybe every inch of my body is by this point in my sojourn, rather hopelessly saturated in “red dirt,” as we call it here :-)]. Thanks to some very good people who have welcomed me into their humanitarian lives, I have learned and done more in this journey than I expect might have happened in years of some sorts of “normal,” Western lifestyles:
So where have these days taken me? Well . . . I have learned how to build a Zambian house, and laid some bricks on one in progress. This home, incidentally, is entirely funded and implemented by a loving Australian family who has seen the need in one hardworking Zambian family and has decided to do something about it . . . I have discovered that bicycle taxi just might be my favorite form of transportation [except that I have yet to experience the ox-cart version that will transpire tomorrow :-)] . . . I have toured a grassroots gardening project and learned the difference between the white and red guava trees . . . I have learned how wells are built in this country–quite fascinated by it, in fact . . . I have seen the ingeniously-constructed dome in which groundnuts are stored on a farm before being sold . . .
In short, I have been immersed in the sorts of experiences that make me wonder at the depth and breadth of possibilities when people are not resigned to living within the boxes and bounds that financial comfort so easily engender.
This particular photo is one I took today as Raymond and Christopher showed me their water well, where their mother daily draws their cooking, washing, and drinking water–a good 15-minute walk from their hut. Their family is the one that, time and funds allowed, will get to move into a real brick home before long now.

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