Friday 26 June 2015
Today, we finally did something I have been very keen to learn more of and participate in!
The making of Thailand’s Elephant Poo Paper!
This is an incredible process that allows the poorer provinces of Thailand to make money through a sustainable process- that of an Elephant passing dung! It helps them to maintain their care of the Elephants and of the dedicated Mahouts. And here’s how they do it!
Thursday 25 June 2015
Each day, between volunteering tasks, we have a lovely lunch that we all help to prepare. As a result, I’ve been learning lots of Thai cooking tips and techniques and here’s a particularly nifty one- making coconut milk!
Like many fools before me, I assumed coconut milk just came from inside a coconut easy peasy no process required… Even though I have seen, for myself, that coconuts actually contain coconut water AND have glugged much of this under the hot Thai sun while chopping down trees and the like! But, here is the step by step guide of what I now know better!
- A couple of coconuts
- Boiling Water
Let’s Go Coconuts
1. First you will need one of these things:
Wednesday 24 June 2015
This evening was the weekly local market just 15 minute drive outside of Ban Tathit.
I had the pleasure of indulging in the strange and unusual!
Tuesday 23 June 2015
Today, we faced another (rather more fun) task required by The Mahouts of the elephant village of Ban Tathit- walking and washing the elephants!
Just after lunch, all the Mahout’s and the elephants met at Mr Lee’s, from where we all walked together to the Surin River where the elephants can play, drink, wash and chomp a number of trees along the way!
13 June 2015
We set off bright and early and 6am this morning, to ensure we made good time across the Botswana border and got to our first stop, Elephant Sands in Nata.
It really was an exciting this for me, standing the border of Zambia and staring out at the neighbouring borders of Zimbabwe, Botswana and Namibia! I’d never travelled in such a way before!
Sunday 31st May
I’ve had limited church experience, but today’s by far took the prize as the best church experience ever!
The Village Chief of Mwandi requests that volunteers attend at least one church service whilst in Mwandi, and dress appropriately for the occasion. In other words, where a traditional wrap around skirt for the occasion. I feel I found the perfect one for me, and at only 40 Kwacha!
02 May 2015
This was a great GREAT day, not only for the foodie in me, but also for that little girl with lots of questions that never quite left me as I got older.
First, the food!
We jumped out of bed in the morning and skipping breakfast intentionally, as we heading down to the Cape Town Neigbourgoods Market- and awesome gigantic Food Market, with what I like to call a “things market” on the side.
Frankly, this was just ridiculous. My stomach was crying out with a painful hunger that got worse the more I looked around! There was just too much damned choice!
22 April 2015
Our exam, it feels like, is looming right around the corner and each of us as students can agree on one thing; we’re not learning squat! The reading-through-a-module-a-day thing isn’t exactly an inspiring way of learning, and the few times I have been out on the game reserve with the Course Leader, he’s made it quite hard to get enthusiastic. Don’t get me wrong, he’s a nice enough guy, but I suppose he sees these animals every day so for him it’s just not exciting. So while the rest of us are trying to take a photo of or observe, say, a Giraffe in the distance, he’s bringing his foot on and off the break in quick succession to shake the car and make it both impossible and uncomfortable. He smiles, so it’s obviously a joke to him, but here’s the problem… I saved and spent money I may never have again and not to mention made a series of sacrifices in order to be here. If he believes, as it sometimes feels, that I can afford to come on these experiences again and again then he would be very much mistaken. This is it, and to be honest it feels like the magic gets sucked out a little more each day. Today, I told him this, and reminded him of the cost and sacrifice from each of us. With any luck, it will sink in.
So, after this general disappointment, when I heard today that Peter the Ranger was conducting a hike in the Wilderness, myself and the other students jumped on board. After all, what better way to learn about nature than to trek through it!
12 April 2015
What a simply perfect weekend!
I have been desperately missing the pleasure of cooking just recently, so while most the Kwantu volunteers spent their weekend in Jeffers Bay, and the remaining two (George and Heather, husband and wife from Canada) stayed in a nice hotel in Port Elizabeth, I took advantage of being the only person remaining in Port Elizabeth’s Albeit Lodge Hostel and decided to commandeer the hostel’s apparently untouched kitchen.
When I say untouched, I don’t mean something new and sparkling… I’m actually using a very polite term for something else altogether.
2nd April 2015
Today began as something disgusting, horrendous and just generally upsetting but later grew into something unforgettably special.
This morning we were taken as volunteers to help feed the lions living on the game reserve. The meat is loaded onto a truck, then driven round to where the lions are kept and thrown in. It was good fun! They do love it, and you finally get to see their natural instincts come out!