søndag 29. juli 2012

Livingstone - Home away from home

(For my non-Norwegian friends, I have decided to write this post in English. We’ll see what I will do for the rest of my stay).

Our first week in Africa has come to an end, and the days are flying too fast!
After the flight from Norway to Johannesburg (through London), we spent a night in Melville, Joburg from Monday until Tuesday. The reason we wanted to stay one night there was that I was supposed to meet Stephanie Matseleng. She is an academic working at the University of Witwatersrand, which I have been in contact with related to my master thesis the last 5-6 months. Sadly, she couldn’t make it, but we had a nice stay in Melville anyway. After lunch and some hours sleeping at the hotel, Nomndeni de la Changuion, we went to the OriginCenter at the University Campus. There they showed the African history and the history of mankind. At this time they also had an exhibition for Mandela’s 94th birthday. We didn’t have much time before they closed, but we got to see quite a lot as we rushed through the museum. 

In the evening we enjoyed dinner and desert in the restaurant street of Melville, before we needed some more sleep (you really get tired from sitting on the plane all night!). 
Next morning a nice Zimbabwean taxi driver picked us up and drove us to the airport. The roads were blocked with cars (around 08.00 in the morning), so we got to see a lot of the city as the taxi driver drove many side roads. At the airport in Livingstone, the manager of the lodge we have stayed at during our stay here, Richard Chanter, picked us up and drove us to the lodge. Chanters Lodge is small and quiet, close to town, so we have enjoyed. During lunch Eliane and her youngest sister came to visit us, and it was a nice reunion! After me doing some literature reading by the pool, and Knut Are some sleeping, Samson and a friend of him came to visit as well. They drove us to Ocean Basket were we had some nice fish (never been to that restaurant before actually! :O). 

Chanters Lodge
Relaxing by the pool (I've only had one swim.Cold)

On Wednesday we met Mama Alice in town, sharing some soft drinks at Wonderbake. She has quit working at Willma Guest House, and is now her own boss making and selling things to different customers. It was as always very nice to see Alice again. Then Mr Mupoti drove us to SOS Children’s Village where we met the girl I am sponsoring there. She has turned three years old, and screamed when she saw the scary muzungus (white people). After some time getting used to us, she started to interact more with us. I met her in April last year, and it was nice too see how she has grown. After lunch we met Namukolo for a very short time (she was stressing with some arrangements for David Livingstone High School’s visit to Norway). We were supposed to meet her this evening, but she has been to Lusaka and the buses from Lusaka to Livingstone were full today.
Thursday morning Samson and another friend, picked us up, and we went to his school in Maramba. It is a basic school for poor children in the area. All the schools in Livingstone now are busy with preparing for exams, since it is a school holiday after next week, so we did not get to see any teaching. 
Samson in front of his school in Maramba

After greeting some teachers and the head master, he drove us around the different poor compounds around Maramba. Knut Are has not seen these poor compounds so close before, so there were a lot of impressions for him. After cruising around Dambwa Site, Dambwa central and town for a while, we went back to the lodge for some reading and sleeping. For lunch we went to Café Zambezi, were we met Bessie and Marjorie. After lunch we went to visit Mr Habuuka at David Livingstone High School, and we got to see the new building for the special education unit. Luster Vidaregåande Skule (the high school my mother used to work at) and an English school for special education has helped funding the building. Last time we only saw the construction, but this time the classrooms were operating. It was nice to see the finished results.The building has two classrooms and 25 students.
The special education building

One of the classrooms

The second classroom

For dinner that evening, we went to Mr and Mrs Mupoti and their children and nephew, for some nshima and other traditional food. We tasted everything, besides the caterpillars.. Next time maybe? ;)

After a stop by Willma Guest House on Friday, we picked up the girl I am sponsoring at SOS and the lady who works as her mother in the village. We went back to Chanters lodge were we could enjoy a quiet lunch, and it was a really nice time. As I wrote earlier, when she saw us the first time she screamed, but this day she took my hand when we came into her house. During lunch we played, smiled and laughed, and I was very happy afterwards!
That evening we went to Armadillos for dinner, were we finally met the busybusy teachers Barbara and Cynthia, and also Jim K joined us for dinner. Barbara is working as a deputy at a school outside Lstone, so she has to live at school. Cynthia has been busy all week with visitors from the English school for special education. (To read more about them, check this out: http://lodgeman-lodgeblog.blogspot.com/2012/07/zambia-meets-uk-for-children-with.html )At least we got to spend some time with them, which we really appreciated.
Knowing that mama Alice never have seen the Falls, after living in Livingstone for 11 years, we decided to invite her, Jane and Eliane for the Falls on Saturday. As everyday in Lstone, we had a really nice time, and were surprised how much water there still was in the Falls. We sat by the river for a while, as me, Jane and Eliane dipped our feet in the water. It was nice! 

                  Zambian fisherman in Zambezi

We had lunch at David Livingstone Safari Lodge and Spa, the lodge we got married at

 Mr Mupoti recommended a new restaurant for us that we tried that evening, The Golden Leef Restaurant opposite of Ngolide Lodge as you drive to Victoria Falls (it is the same owners). It was really good food there, one of the best restaurants I have tried in Livingstone actually.
At this moment (Sunday), we are enjoying the surroundings at Chanters Lodge after being on a game drive this morning. We were picked up at 07.00, and spent three hours on the drive. We saw a lot of giraffes and water buffalos up close during the drive, and also some zebras, elephants, water monitor, hippos, impalas and baboons of course and other animals.  Since I have been to safari in Botswana and South Africa it was about time to go on a safari here in Livingstone! 

The elephant is hiding

We have also had a visit from Alice, Jane, Chanda/Hope (Jane’s son) and Eliane who wanted to say goodbye before we leave for South Africa tomorrow.
It has been a really nice stay in Livingstone this week, as always. As you can see it has been a lot of social meetings and relaxing. It has been good to not having to stress with wedding planning and getting married! ;)
Since I’ve only been in Lstone during rain season earlier, it has been a different stay this time. Now it is cold season here, which have meant that it has been quite cold when the sun has gone down, dry grass and very little insects and mosquitoes! But during the day it has been like a really good, Norwegian summer.
Tomorrow we will go to Pietermaritzburg, where I will spend the next two months, and Knut Are under two weeks. Excited to see what it will bring and excited to start my research. I will actually start on Tuesday morning, visiting a school I will use as a pilot for my questionnaires and interviews.  

mandag 2. juli 2012

Ut på nye eventyr

Etter ein hektisk vinter og vår veit eg ikkje kor verken mars, april eller mai vart av, og no er det jammen meg slutt på juni også! Dette fører til at tida som er igjen til eg reiser på feltarbeid til Sør-Afrika blir mindre og mindre! Litt under 3 veker faktisk..
Dette fører igjen til at eg så smått byrjar å blogge litt igjen.

Eg både gledar og gruar meg til denne turen, mest av alt er eg spent!
Det er mange forskjellar frå turen min til Zambia. Då var det skulen som organiserte nesten alt, fann plass å bu, praksisplass, eg reiste med mange andre, og hovudtanken med reisa var å bli kjent med ein anna kultur. Denne gongen er det eg, eine og åleine, som har organisert alt, teke kontakt med ulike folk i Sør-Afrika (professorar, forfattarar, overnattingsplassar, skular), og sist, men ikkje minst, eg skal vere heilt åleine (nesten heile tida)! Samtidig som alt dette er litt skummelt, tenkjer eg det er bra at det ikkje er heilt likt som når eg tok bacheloren, at det er litt meir utfordrande og at det meste fell på meg. sia det no faktisk er ein master. Eg har lært mykje allereie i planleggings- og organiseringsprosessen og eg trur eg kjem til å lære mykje meir og oppdage andre sider ved meg sjølv enn når eg reiste til Zambia.

Den 22.juli startar eg og Knut Are på turen til Afrika. Frå den 23.-24.07 skal me vere i Rosebank i Johannesburg, der eg skal treffe Stephanie Allais ved Witwatersrand Universitet. Stephanie har eg hatt kontakt med sidan i vinter, etter at eg sendte mail til Hein Marais som har skrive "South Africa - Pushed to the Limits" (Bibelen min under denne masteren). Eg fann bloggen hans på internett etter at eg kjøpte boka hans i Sør-Afrika i januar. Til mi store overrasking svara han ganske fort, og sidan han ikkje kunne så mykje om utdanning, sette han meg i kontakt med Stephanie. Ho vart med ein gong interressert i oppgåva mi, og har hjelpt meg under heile prosessen i vinter og vår. 

Etter eitt døgn i Johannesburg, reiser me på ein liten ferie til Zambia, sidan me først er på kontinentet! Me blir der i 6 dagar, før me reiser tilbake til Sør-Afrika. Av alle byar i Sør-Afrika, valde eg Pietermaritzburg (frå no av Maritzburg). Grunnen til dette er at eg ville til provinsen KwaZulu-Natal, men eg ville ikkje til Durban. Både fordi den verkar litt stor og skummel for meg, og fordi mamma og pappa hadde litt dårlege erfaringar der i frå. Etter litt google-søking, fann eg fram til Pietermaritzburg, som er hovudstaden i provinsen. I følgje rettleiaren min, som er i frå Cape Town og har jobba i Pietermaritzburg, er det ein trygg og roleg by med "småby-mentalitet" (den har 'berre' 400 000-500 000 innbyggjarar!). Det er visst ikkje så alt for mykje som skjer der i følgje han, men for meg passar dette perfekt sidan eg skal vere åleine. I tillegg kjem eg frå Hafslo, så det skjer sikkert nok for meg! Eg har funne eit lite gjestehus, som eg i ettertid fann ut låg rett ved Universitetet, som heiter Ridgeway Close, og ligg i forstaden Scottsville. Her får eg min eigen leilegheit med kjøkken, og eigarane bur på plassen noko som gjer det litt 'tryggare' for min del. På Universitet har eg forresten kome i kontakt med ein professor, Volker Wedekin, takka vere Stephanie. Han skal hjelpe meg når eg kjem dit, og har sagt at eg kan få sitte på Universitet og arbeide med oppgåva. Perfect! Kanskje eg blir kjent med nokon studentar og? 

Car rental Pietermaritzburg       

Etter at Knut Are har vore med meg i Maritzburg i litt under to veker, reiser han tilbake til Noreg for å jobbe. Dette blir nok det vanskelegaste med heile turen, sidan eg blir sittande igjen åleine. Men, men, den tid, den sorg!

Eg må byrje å arbeide med datainnsamlinga med ein gong eg(me) kjem til Maritzburg. For dei som er interressert, er forskingsspørsmåla mine for augeblikket:

How is the present situation regarding equalities/inequalities in urban high schools in Pietermaritzburg, South Africa, 18 years after apartheid?
-       To what extent is it possible with economic equality at the same time as one recognize/implement indigenous knowledge and culture in the education system?
-       To what degree are traditions and indigenous knowledge and culture present in the schools?
Hovudformålet med oppgåva er å snakke med "folket på bakken", studentane sjølv, foreldra deira og lærarar. Eg vil og snakke med rektorar. Målet mitt er å gå til tre skular med ulik sosialøkonomisk bakgrunn; ein rik, ein fattig og ein middelklasse. Eg skal ha spørjeundersøking, intervju og mest truleg ein klassediskusjon på eine skulen.

Dette er det faglege eg skal drive med fram til eg reiser heim att 27.september. Utanom det har eg meldt meg på klatrekurs; alltid greitt å prøve noko nytt når ein er på ein ny plass, og skal nok finne andre ting å bedrive tida med! Det er meir enn nok skulearbeid å gjere i vertfall!

Det kjem nok meir blogginnlegg når eg er kommen til Afrika, før den tid er det lesing av teori, førebuing og siste finpuss av intervjuguide og spørreskjema, ein tur heim til Rockabilly og babyen til Ine (som forhåpentlegvis kjem snart!) og Stavernfestivalen (med enormt bra program i år)!

No må eg tilbake til å lese om Karl Marx og marxismen.

God ferie til dei som har det! ;)