Wednesday, August 31, 2011

Goodbye South Africa, Hello Malawi!

It has officially been one week since I have stepped foot on this continent, and I am happy to be here.  (Sometimes, though, i just have to remember that!)  :)  It has not been a problem remembering that when I was in Stellenbosch/Cape Town, with people I know and things to do.

but, when you arrive to "The real Africa" things are a little different.  Life is slower.  You arrange things as they come up.  Especially when not much has been arranged for you.  I was thinking that I would be arriving here to have a little bit more news (from McGill/our main contact at the College here) than what I actually have.  but, not really surprising, if i think about it.  How would they know more than what i would know?  So, as I got in an email yesterday: "it seems like McGill is McGill.  and Africa is Africa.  and you are in the better of the two."

I was indeed reminded that I was in Africa yesterday, when i "hurried" my lunch so that I could get back to the hotel for "just after 3pm" to meet my contact/supervisor from the college.  I got dropped off, was waiting around, read a bit.  Fell asleep for a nap.  wondered if she was going to show up.  at about 5:45, knock on the door.  "Hello Amelia!  Welcome to Malawi!  Sorry I am a bit late."  ohhhhhhhh.  Africa wins Again (AWA!).
Anyway.  I have been provided for the first few days accommodation at a pretty fancy hotel.  I struggle with things like this though (sometimes) because I never want to be one of those white girls who never ventures out into the world.  But, i don't really know where to go and what to do!!!  Today, to kill a bit of boredom, I think I will venture out and just see where my feet take me.  "Follow my nose," if you will, and see what happens.  I have purposely not ordered lunch today, so that I will have to go out and find some.  At any rate.  Life in Malawi is slow today.  I know think it is going to pick up tomorrow, though!  

It also doesn't really help that the internet is slow (not a surprise), but, I can only upload about 60% of the websites that I hope to upload.  Like.... really not convenient that I cannot access McGill's website, or TD canada trust.  

so... a bit back to South Africa.

My days were great!  Not so busy, but not boring.  We spent enough time just chilling, going out to a few wineries and coffee shops, watching a few shows, catching up on life.  The highlight of the trip was a wee "Weekend" (it was just saturday night) trip out to a place called Jacobsbaai, on the west coast of south africa, about 1.5 hrs north of Cape Town.  One of the fellows that I know from the last time I was here (Jaco) is going up to Europe for the next year to study and be with his lady.  He leaves in about 10 days, so, for the most part, this was his chance to get away and hang out with his close friends before leaving.

And.  I just got to tag a long!  

and. I was just to happy to be able to do so!

and.  It was delightful. 

it was filled with friends (both old and new), some games, some walking on the beach, some grilling a fish Braai, somewhat stray-ish cats, white buildings, attempts at night photography, and fresh fresh air.  

We then drove back to Stellenbosch, had a stop at Juan (my friend with whom i stayed) parent's place for some delicious south african grub (not grubs), and back for an evening of movie watching (the animated film Illusionist;  which, imo was slightly better than the triplets of belleville.).  The next morning, we were up for some breakfast in town, and out to the country side for some wine tasting.  

I have uploaded some photos to my flickr account, in a set called South Africa and Malawi 2011.  I know that it is to look at, but, whatever.  if you want to have a look at photos (and hopefully I will be uploading the best ones as they come along) you can do so! My photos will also have descriptions of what is going on.  So, hopefully, they can serve as a little bit of a blog as well (if i don't get the chance to update here as frequently as I... or you... might like.

so.  go on now.  have a look!  

Stark-Condè WineryOld Friendsworld coffee at espresso labBagels at neighbourgoods marketBird prints in sandSwartriet Cottages
Nighttime hut at SwartrietNight time fencepostRed Chairs at Post Card CafeWine tasting at waterford estateAnother tough day in AfricaThe Barefoot boy

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