Monday was our last full day in Kang :-( so we made final preparations with TXY for the meeting on Tuesday then had our last ever Kang’s Kitchen lunch. For the record Kang’s Kitchen does the best fat cakes and soup and just general lunch ever so we ate there every day.
Tuesday was the meeting .........
The Kang VDC and S&DC came aswell as the Hukuntsi S&DC and some social workers aswell as Skillshare representatives and TXY. Basically, the meeting re-discussed everything the four of us had been discussing with the Kang VDC for the past 12 weeks only with more witnesses. However, not to put a downer on it, hopefully the fact that there was more witnesses and more official people present the things promised will be fulfilled and TXY can be a fully registered school within the next few months - which would be fabulous! After the meeting me and Esther got the bus back to Gabs and bumped into Rodgers, one of the teacher from Matsha. I have to say it was the funniest drive ever! The driver left behind the bus conductor and we had to wait about a half hour for him to catch up on foot. It was lovely to see the Maun volunteers again, especially David as I hadn’t seen him for 12 weeks! We got back to the guest house and me and Neel went out to buy some Vin CoCo and Twiser (the best drink in Botswana!) - basically we spent every night of de-brief drinking Vin CoCo and playing card based drinking games, it was fab.
Wednesday and Thursday were just boring debrief where we had to share our experiences with each other and its clear everyone did so many amazing things whilst we have been on placement.
Friday me, Neel and Callum got up at half 3 in the morning so that we could climb Kgali Hill - the highest natural hill thing in Botswana! It was proper sketchy at first as it was dark and all we had to light the way was cowpig and Neel’s torch so it was pitch black and we were basically climbing a mountain :-S We stopped half way up for a cup of green tea and watched the stars, there were so many shooting stars and Gabs looked so beautiful from all the way up - it has to be the smallest capital city in the world?! We got to the top about an hour before sunrise and at first we were so excited to have gotten there - so we had another green tea. But after like an hour it was foofing chilly!!!! However it was way worth it. Sun rise was amazing and the view was phenomenal. On the way back down we found an actual path - we had scaled the side of the mountain literally climbing over rocks (epic fail!). The army were running up and down doing drills so we followed them for a bit but got distracted by a pretty view and got left behind. After getting lost for an age we finally found the bottom and sat watching Baboon’s for ages, there was really cute baby ones bouncing around all over the place and one hefty male who waltzed past us and actually posed for a picture! In the afternoon (well actually it was 10am but it felt like mid afternoon for us) we went to Otse to an amazing school for disabled children which also has its own businesses - pottery making, candle making, crop growing, orangery (which makes the best oranges ever - we may have acquired a few for tasting purposes) and loads of other things. A man showed us how to make a bowl out of pottery. He was so skilled and wipped up this bowl like it was cutting up an onion (which incidentally I have great difficulty with being incapable at almost any cooking based tasks!) but he was super speedy and made it look easy. We had the most amazing lunch in the whole time of Botswana at Otse - and then had some pretty emotional speeches from Rob, Wairimu and BK as it was Robs last day in Botswana today. There was such drama on Friday aswell ..... Callum got told that he needed to get a visa stamp in his new passport otherwise he would be arrested as it looked like he had been in Botswana illegally :-O so with about 15 minuets to spare before the immigration office shut we had to speed through Gabs so he wouldn’t go to jail. To cut a long, dramatic and at times harrowing journey down to a few words .... we missed the office!! But thanks to our sweet innocent English faces and some man taking pity on Callum’s sob story he got a stamp so didn’t have to stay in Botswana forever as an illegal immigrant! That evening we made fire, which took about an hour just to take as the wood is nay as good as in Kang! David and Kesh (who had finally graced us with his presence after hiding away in Maun for an extra two days) cooked us some lovely food and we all sat around the fire eating and drinking ---- of course Vin CoCo; what else!
Saturday was our last full day in Botswana :-( so it was today that most people set aside to buy presents for people at home! It was just a stressful shopping trip trying to find something for my Dad who had demanded a present for his birthday, one for father’s day and a general African present - after spending ages looking a bought him a musical instrument plingy thing which I regretted about 5 seconds after giving it to him as all I have heard for the past few days is ‘pling pling pling’ from him playing it!! I spent the afternoon trying to cram everything into my suitcase without it popping/ without breaking all my presents. To mix it up a little me and David got cider this eve - turns out lemon cider is peculiar! We decided to have a light night as we had to be up early in the morn for our flights.
Sunday was so emotional. We left the guesthouse at 9ish to go to the airport. After arriving late and the plane being delayed in our honor it had to be delayed even more because me Callum and Kesh’s passport got voided and they couldn’t get our boarding passes. Never before had I been so scared that I was going to be stranded in Botswana! After what felt like forever the airpeople gave up and wrote us handwritten boarding passes (lol) and just let us through. They had to ring ahead to Nairobi to let them know we had ticket qualms so they could sort it for us, then we got on the plane. I no this will make me sound like such an epic fatty but the plane food was amazing! We also saw Kilimanjaro through the window - it was on the other side of the plane to us but a kind Indian man let me basically straddle him trying to get a good look and a picture. We then had a 8 hour wait at Nairobi airport. After sorting out our boarding cards .... Kenya was able to give us actual ones and thankfully our passports were unvoided (PHEW!) we went for food. I had my first proper coffee in three months - to be fair it wasn’t the delight that I had built it up to be :-( Nairobi was fun - Callum accidentally stole, we drank a litre of vodka, I flew up the escalator with Emma pretending to be superman, we tried to play in the kids playroom but some selfish children were already in there - to be 100% honest I can’t really remember that much more as I woke up to sunrise about 2 hours away from England! Apparently I was fair rowdy but being the shy and retiring person that I am I cannot imagine that at all :P
We got back to England early monday morning and said goodbye. It was so emotional and sad to leave everyone. So now I am back home in chilly willy England, wishing I could be back out in Botswana. I have been in and out of my old school this week sorting out some History teaching resources to send out to Matsha to help my form 5 classes - hopefully its stuff they will be able to keep and use for later years aswell. I definitely want to go back out to Botswana as soon as I can afford it! I’ve already been making plans and hassling people for money and sponsorship so watch this space! I am going to continue this blog now I’m back so I can keep you all posted on how my fundraising is going. I am hoping to climb Kilimanjaro to raise money for the organisation run by BK and Wairimu back in Botswana and to continue sending stuff out to Matsha. So if anyone knows of anything about climbing Kili then please let me know!