I've been crazy busy with work and travel related to work, which explains (but does not excuse) the lack of recent posts.
This one will be brief because it's 7:30 p.m. and I haven't had dinner but I hope it will whet your appetite for more.
This weekend I traveled to just north of Lilongwe for a meeting. Along the road I noticed vendors selling gravel. I also noticed the children who were busy pounding a large rock into a smaller rock to create the gravel. They are doing it as a way to get food to live. If your child is whining because you won't buy him/her the latest electronics, I suggest you tell them to go pound rocks.
I've made a few Malawian friends. I can meet Americans in America. I'd prefer to spend time with the locals while I'm here.
One told me today that he is paying off his "not finished" house by paying $20 a month. The house doesn't yet have electricity or running water but is his dream home.
Another friend, who provides a service for me, asked me to only give her a small portion of what I owed her. Instead, I'll save the money for her for the next month. That way, her abusive husband won't have access to the cash.
Malawi is one of the poorest countries on earth. Inflation has been insane here recently. People starve. Life expectancy is low because of disease and other factors.
In Samoa, friends could call family in New Zealand, Australia or the USA if they needed money. That's not the case here. In Samoa, food was always available. That's not the case here.
I see people here working in ways that Americans wouldn't, just to stay alive. I feel humbled and awed by the spirit of the Malawian people.