Archive from December, 2012
Dec 20, 2012 - General    2 Comments

Christmas in Katete

Christmas has always been one of my favourite times of year. I have spent many festive seasons in hot climates as well as cold, and have always managed to get into the Christmas spirit whatever the weather. However, this year, in Zambia, it’s taking a bit more effort than usual to create that Christmas vibe.

The weather does obviously play a part… blue skies and blazing sunshine don’t often feature on Christmas greeting cards. However, I think it’s that Christmas can’t get under your skin here the way it does back home, where the radio blasts out Christmas tunes from October onwards and the department stores open the Christmas section at the end of the summer! Visiting the supermarket to find aisles stacked with mince pies, Christmas puds and mulled wine helps too.

Well, here in Katete, we don’t own a radio, we don’t have any large shops, the supermarket is over one hour away and none of the Katete shops have heard of mince pies!

Read on…

Dec 4, 2012 - Food, General    4 Comments

It’s Mango time!

I spent my teenage years living in Asia, so mangoes are not something new to me. However, I’ve never had my own mango tree before. Now, with three large mango trees in my garden, I have more mangoes than I know what to do with.

In London, it costs upwards of £1.50 (13,000 ZMK / US$2.50) for a single mango. This would mean that if I wanted to have the same number of mangoes at my disposal in London as I do here, I would need to spend somewhere in the region of £750 – £1000.

Daily, scores of mangoes fall to my garden floor and start to rot. I can’t keep up! My fridge is full of mangoes, my hands have acquired a yellow tinge, and I have a callus from chopping so incessantly.

Read on…