I’m It! Ten Random Facts About Myself.

I just got tagged by Sue Ann Bowling to tell 10 random facts about myself, tag 3 other people and link to their sites.

To preface the assignment, I have been trying hard to publicize my newly published book Free To Bloom about the adventures of a single woman learning to live alone in Costa Rica and around the world. While visiting She Writes, a very helpful and interesting site for women writers, I encountered a group called WordPress Bloggers and finally left a comment listing my blog. Lo and behold, I got tagged. I just haven’t got into … Read more...

Tales of Malawi – End of the Road

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Liwonde National Park, which has the best game and bird viewing in Malawi lies on the southern end along the Shire River where it enters Lake Malawi, the second biggest lake in Africa. Back on the bus, this time Ivey from the main office of WFP comes with us and brings her two young girls for the adventure. They have never seen big wild animals before and are most excited about elephants and baboons.

We are diverted from the heat, acrid woodfire smoke, and our swollen ankles (almost everyone has them now), by more Malawian tales. We ask so … Read more...

Malawian Village Life

Chikwawa District – Kampomo Village

We meet the local Water for People (WFP) staff for orientation. Elias, Joseph and Ephrone welcome us and give us our schedule for the week. First we’ll be visiting two villages approved for a well and sanitation, but not yet installed.

A few numbers:

100% – Target of WFP water and sanitation facilities in 50 villages (out of 500) in the Chikwawa District – Achieved – 50%

400,000 – Population of the largest city, Blantyre

13,000,000 – Population of Malawi

$176 (US) – GNP per capita

43 – Life Expectancy … Read more...

Jill and Cindi’s Excellent African Adventure – Malawi

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With Water for People in Malawi

Water for People, an NGO (non-governmental organization, for you non-bureaucrats like me), helps people in developing countries improve their quality of life by supporting the development of locally sustainable drinking water resources, sanitation facilities and health education programs.

I’d done a little googling on Malawi, and the top spot is reserved for Madonna who adopted her latest child here and stayed at the same Malawi Sun Hotel where our group arrives en masse. We are nine staff, volunteers and water company prize winners, the latter having won the trip by either writing the … Read more...

Jill and Cindi’s Excellent African Adventure

Cindi on Umlani SafariCindi on Umlani Safari, Kruger, So.Africa                    Jill in Kampomo Village, Malawi

Jill in Malawi

In the fall of 2008, my dear friend Cindi and I were planning a trip to Europe together. I had not been there since my childhood when I had lived in France, and both of us wanted to travel in Italy, too.

But the trip was not to be. Cindi received life-threatening news. I remember the debilitating fear upon learning the news that she had breast cancer. I pledged to help and be with her any way I could through her surgery and its aftermath, not knowing then that Read more...