Almost twelve years ago, I had an opportunity to travel to Africa for work. Over the span of two weeks, I visited Kenya and Lesotho, two very different countries with very different climate and culture.
Lesotho is a small kingdom completely surrounded by South Africa. It was June, and while it was hot in Kenya, it was winter time and much colder in Lesotho. (It was hard to pack for that trip as you can imagine.) On the last full day of my trip, I was taken on a field visit to a remote village on a mountain called Nazareth in Lesotho. (Yes, Jesus also grew up in a village with the same name.)
On a recent post titled Horse & Rabbits, I shared some animal photos that I took at that village. On this post, I will share a few more pictures of the scenes I captured while I was there. They are kind of special to me, not so much because of their photographic quality but the memories that they bring.
From the photo above and the one below, you can see two types of houses: rectangular ones with tin roofs, and round ones with thatched roofs. Which one would you choose? It turns out that thatched roofs provide much better insulation, so they keep the house cooler in the summer and warmer in the winter. The hut with the thatched roof in the photo above even has something that looks like a solar panel on the roof! It was one of the things that I saw at the village that really surprised me.
They say the grass is greener on the other side of the fence. In this case, it's a barbed wire fence, and the two donkeys on one side are feeding on maize stover (dry leaves and stalks that are residues from a maize crop harvest), while the lone donkey on the other side is feasting on lush green plants. Not sure why the differential treatment, but life isn't always fair in our eyes.
The purpose of my field visit was to see for myself the transformation that had taken place in this community. The pond in the picture below was dug by people from the village for the purpose of improving irrigation for their farms and gardens during the dry seasons. It was the result of a so-called food-for-work humanitarian project where they received food aid in exchange for work they did to improve livelihoods in their own community. It's a dignified way for them to receive aid.
On that visit, I also met some young children who were not in school. One of them was blind in one eye. Later I was told that he lost his eye after he was scratched on the face by a big rooster. The wound led to an infection in his eye which eventually resulted in blindness due to the lack of adequate medical attention. Stories like that just highlight the harsh reality these people face in their environment where many things that we take for granted are simply beyond their reach.
And that's all for this post. Thanks for reading!