Balaka has for many months been very hot, dry and dusty. There were, miraculously, trees that continued to produce beautiful flowers and sustain green leaves and even produce delicious mangos. But at the same time, the air was often filled with a choking haze from smoldering leaf litter fires. In fields and along roads it was common to see blackened ground where people set fire to dry grasses. It made the landscape at times look very desolate.
During the last two weeks however, previously barren ground has quickly turned green! Grass is sprouting all over, dormant trees and bushes have sprouted and it now rains almost every day – sometime a little, sometime a LOT. After months of cloudless skies, the clouds are shielding us from the scorching sun. Today the temperatures are in the low to mid-20s (that’s under 80 for those who prefer the Fahrenheit scale) in marked contrast to the typical 35-38C (95 to 100 F) temperatures for all of October and November.
Meanwhile back at home, the first snow storm of the year is dumping copious quantities of snow on southern Ontario. One week from today I will be arriving back in Canada and hopefully there will still be enough to go skiing in Waterloo.
My return to Canada will no doubt include some time reflecting upon my experiences in Malawi. I will add additional comments to this blog to share some of those thoughts and I have several draft postings awaiting me – some that have been waiting for weeks – as I work through some of my thoughts and the challenges they present. Please let me know if you want to discuss them by phone or email or in person.
For the moment though, it is back to the computer to complete a document.
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