Monday, June 27, 2011

Manyuma, yamavuta, Ntchitoso.

"Houses are trouble, jobs also."


I realize this is beginning to sound like the never ending story of my misplacement but it continues. I got down to my new site only to find that my house was not done being built. It was finished soon enough, however all of my stuff is still a 3 hour bike ride away at another volunteers house. It looks like it might stay there for some time also, as there is a country-wide fuel shortage, and me having something to cook on and sleep on isn't important enough for the district assembly to use there precious reserves on moving me around (understandable, yet frustrating).

The house was finished after a couple of days so I've been there. The house, as small as it is (I wanted to post pictures but the computer I'm on isn't recognizing the camera so you're going to have to wait), its fine. The problem is my extremely wealthy and even more so overbearing and clingy land lady who is horrible to her hired help and inhibiting my ability to integrate into the community because people are scared of her and what she can do when she throws her money around. I'm looking for another house, one that is not on a family compound, with more space, my own toilet, and a kitchen. Not too much to ask for, me thinks. Finding a house is seeming to consume all my time since my landlady is making it difficult, she doesn't want her Chichewa, Chilomwe-speaking monkey to leave her house, it gives her a step up over the rest of the community. So that's that, I'm house-hunting.


When I arrived in the BOMA for work, the first thing I did was meet with the District Commissioner to introduce myself and and figure out what my work situation is. She said that the project I was supposed to be working on is idol and has been for six months now for lack of funding. They offered to give me busy work to occupy myself, which I quickly refused. So, here I am, with 8 months left of my service and no job to do but starting over in a new community, finding projects for myself to do. Here we go. We'll see what happens.

On the bright side, I still love Malawi, I'm just a bit more excited to finish my contract than I was before.


One last update. For those of you who have been following me and waiting for the borehole project to come through, it won't. It has been canceled. The Peace Corps office took so long to process my grant (about 9 months after all was said and done, and still not quite finished), that people in the community (the primary and secondary school committees) thought the village development committee, along with myself, stole the money that was raised for the community contribution (about 90,000 Malawian Kwacha = about 600 USD). They asked for the money back and for the grant to be canceled, despite my best efforts to advise them otherwise. They said they would prefer to take the money the school children had raised and do a smaller scale, less reliable, but much cheaper piping system, rather than a full-fledged borehole. That is that.

Oh Murphy, I am your sister.


  1. Amy:
    We still know you put your heart into it. We also this is a normal part of what we would call developing countries. We still love your willingness to make things better for those around you. We are also thankful for your well being. Keep the updates and we want pictures because I heard if it isn't in a photo it didn't happen.

    Love Dad

  2. I cherish that even with all the have not thrown in the towel and come home!!! You value the need that the people have and will find a way to better their lives.

    It is really to bad that they thought that the money had been taken. The borehole may happen for them someday, but now is not the time.

    Keep on Swimming!!!! Your smile is all it takes to help change a life :-)

  3. Amy - I'm so proud of you and will continue to put you and your adventure in the peace corps foremost on my prayer list. Thanks for the update! Keep smiling - how's Chuck? Love, Janice