so, i had no interwebs at all in africa. i am going to see what i can do about catching you up on my trip in the next couple days, now that i am home and have slept for 17 straight hours. :) also, my laptop appears to have died (!?!?) so pics will still have to be forthcoming... sorry!
a few non-linear thoughts to get us going:
...lake malawi is gorgeous. one of my favorite nights was when the power went out (scheduled roll-out) and me, brian, charlie and ellie sat on the beach looking up at the stars. you could see the milky way, billions of years of light... we saw shooting stars and an upside down & backward 'big dipper' and brian found a giraffe constellation which he named bartholemew. it's a night i'll remember.
...we had several wonderful dinners out, and i do mean *out*. very little of life in malawi takes place indoors. we ate outside, walked outside, marketed outside, rested outside...and the rest of the population seemed to, as well. it was totally up my alley.
....one of my personal highlights was dinner every night. we worked hard - *really* hard - and dinner was the most relaxed part of the day. communal bottles of wine were passed, stories and histories shared, along with much laughter. i think i will miss dinner most of all.
....village life. again, so communal. i will do my best to describe it to you in upcoming posts, but i have to say this: it made me question my personal definition of wealth. i rather abruptly realized that i define wealth by what *i* have, instead of what *we* have. i saw in the village that life is much richer with a community. i may have running water, but when i saw the trips the women took, about 3 times a day, to the pump to fill their buckets...when i heard them laugh and tease...when i saw them teaching small children to carry small pots of water on their head... it occurred to me that they may have the better of the two.
....i met amazing people, both on my team and in the country. sousand, dan, wise, faith, chifundo, felix, ellie, brian, emmanuel, nepman, harry, bartholemew, elias, teeny and charlie, just off the top of my head. if it's really people who make life rich, then this was a huge deposit into the 'bank' of my life.
....nature is (pardon me here) fucking amazing!!!!! the universe in all it's glory - from the milky way to the warthog - is absolutely breathtaking. the human person, the impala, the frog and the hippo....breathtaking.
...it turns out i can go 4 days in construction clothes without washing them, but that's it. *gross*
....goat is actually really tasty
....plane rides are better with friends...and ambien
....we should stop arguing about who our (faith) stories belong to, and start paying attention to the things they are trying to tell us
....Jesus gets turned away. a lot.
....endorphins and dopamine are overrated (if they come from a cold shower)
....there are brilliant people with *amazing* ideas out there