Thursday, August 10, 2006

01. The Beginning

For the past five years, I've dreamt of living and working in Africa. To secure my place fighting the biggest and most unacceptable injustice in the world, extreme poverty. To live with, to learn from, and to love a new place and a new people.

Today I sit in a Boeing 747 at 37,000 feet crossing the Atlantic Ocean approaching Zambia, and while the lasgna is foul, I consider anybody in my spot to be very lucky! Tomorrow I start my first day of a one volunteer placement with Engineers Without Borders in Kalabo, Zambia. I've been through intense training and it's finally time to get on the ground.

If you would like to be emailed every time I update my blog, send me a quick note and I'll make that happens. Also, check out some of the links to the right - you can find out the current time and weather where I'm staying.

People keep asking my why I want to live in Zambia? Isn't it the 11th lowest country on the human development index (HDI) rating in the world? Isn't the life expectancy only 37 years old? Doesn't drought, disease and famine ravage the country side?

Well yes, these may be true, but I'm sure there is much much more to it. I expect I'll be welcomed into a hardworking, intelligent and vibrant culture. I expect that people here will teach me profound lessons that are scant in the western world. I have so many questions and I believe that positive change is possible.

To learn more about Zambia click here.

But how can it change and how can I contribute? What is life really like in Zambia? What do people do for fun? How do people cope with poverty? What is poverty? How big is a hippopotamus? How do you say the word "opportunity" in Lozi? (the local language in my area) How can we help?

Hopefully I’ll find answers to some of these questions while living in my new home called Kalabo which I’ll write about in a few weeks.

Thanks for your support and have a fantastic August! I’ll send my new address and phone number as soon as I find a home.

- Chad

3 comments:

just me said...

I wish you the best!
Look forward to reading your blog

Anonymous said...

14 Comments:
• At 9:53 AM, chris said…
Hey Chad! All of the very best of luck in your life and work in Zambia. Can't wait to read more about the awesome stuff you'll get up to! Best regards.

• At 10:08 AM, Mallory said…
What a fantastic web site. Can hardly wait for future postings. Take Care and good luck

Mom

• At 10:12 AM, carolinekosmas said…
Glad to see you have a website I can check out. I missed you even before you left but I'm so excited for you! I hope you can stay healthy while you are there. Let me know if there are any health related questions or stuff you need while you're there.

• At 12:29 PM, Davin (Chad is awesome) said…
He's my brother in spirit. So proud *sniffle*

• At 11:56 AM, Wongaroo2 said…
Best of luck big guy! It was good catching up at Christmas time. Take care, and I'll keep reading about your adventures.

• At 10:06 PM, Cort said…
Hey Chad!

Your mom forwarded me your blog and it will be awesome to keep up to date on yur experiences in Zambia. Most people say I wish I could make a difference in the lives of others but you are actually doing it. Good on you! My family and I will remember you in our prayers.
Looking forward to your next installment.

Cort

• At 7:29 AM, Jenny said…
Good Luck Brother! I wish you the best in the coming year and that you fulfill every hope and desire you have while in Zambia! Love you! the new Mrs. McRae

• At 6:43 AM, Erin said…
Chad,

Great entry, I hope that you keep up your blog and add MORE photo's. Malawi is great, and I hope to meet up with you sometime soon.
Ciao,
Erin

• At 6:42 PM, Jazz said…
Hi there Chadly,

Hope Zambia is treating you well. You're only an ocean and several thousand kilometres of savannah and desert country away from Australia now! I'm sending you positive vibes for a healthy and eye opening experience. I'm sure that the smiles you put on the faces of people you meet will be a step towards creating hope and opportunity for Zambians.
All the best
Jazz

• At 1:08 AM, Facinacion said…
hi Chad!
so great I met you.
I hope you have a GRRRRRRRRREAT time in Kalabo. :) Please come visit in Lusaka.. we'll make chicken squash and yogourt with Gin again! :)

• At 11:14 AM, sophia said…
Eagerly awaiting your second post!
-sophia (only two weeks to go...)

• At 11:05 AM, janelle said…
Chad, I feel very proud of you and think that it is great what you are doing there! All the best to you and keep me posted with updates - very interesting!!! :)

• At 3:24 AM, OnkHector said…
Hey Chad,

i'm in Mali for 7 months and never had the chance to see a lion or an elephant... this will change soon, as i'll go to Bamako's zoo soon :-)

Where did you get this patch for your backpack?? (EWB one). I WANT ONE!

et le français ?

Jean-Luc (& Véro) au Mali :-)

• At 2:21 PM, mick said…
Chad, you have no idea what a sence of pride I had while I read your blog this afternoon. And how fortunite I consider myself to be to have you call me your brother. Your mov'en mountains bro, keep it up! I look so forward to hearing more from you and your adventures in the future.

mick

cloud air bed said...
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