Wednesday, November 14, 2007

Zimbabwe, Day 2

On Day 2 in Africa, Adam & I arrived in Bulawayo, Zimbabwe. We were both a bit nervous about going through security & customs with all of our gear. The Zimbabwean government doesn't like journalists very much, and we were just praying that they wouldn't think we were journalists. Praise God, we made it through without any trouble!! Ryan & Trevor met us outside customs and welcomed us to Zimbabwe. It was nice to finally arrive at our destination after 40+ hours of traveling! Ryan & Trevor had been in Zambia checking out some potential new projects, and had just driven to Zimbabwe the night before - so they were pretty excited to be there as well.

Ryan drove us into Bulawayo and explained that we couldn't photograph any government buildings and should be careful not to let anyone see our cameras. Anyone in the CIO (Zim's version of our CIA) could be on the streets in plain clothes, and would probably assume that we were journalists. So, for the most part, I kept my camera down and I never really got many shots of the city :(

Our first stop was at a friend's place, where we gassed up the car and exchanged some money. Check out this fat wad of cash he gave us!! Don't get too excited - that 50,000,000 Zim dollars only equates to $50 US! It was just crazy carrying around that much cash - even though their largest bill ($200,000) is only worth about 20 cents! Zim is currently at something like 13,000% inflation! It's just nuts!

After a quick lunch, we headed to the Theological College of Zimbabwe (TCZ - or TCZed as it's called in Zim). TCZ's Hilltop Campus is located in an old hotel and includes housing for some of the students. It's a very cool facility, and the college and its graduates are the core of Forgotten Voices' work on the ground in Zim.

Ryan had a meeting with the president of TCZ, Victor Naka and John Stomboli. So, Adam & I got straight to work, filming and photographing everything that was going on. They talked for a while, and then took us on a tour of the campus. Out back behind the housing, they've begun a garden based on the principles of Farming God's Way. FGW was started by a man named Pierre (who you'll see later in the trip), and is an amazing farming technique that produces an insane amount of food in a small space. It's TCZ's goal to teach their students Farming God's Way so they can take it back to their churches and communities. The gardens can then be used to feed families, and even make money on crop sales. It's a geniusy plan, if you ask me.

Adam at work:
Victor Naka:
Ryan, Trevor, and John touring the Farming God's Way plot (check out the sweet light and the crazy sky - it was gorgeous!!)
After our visit to TCZ, Ryan took us "home." We stayed at his friend Warren King's home outside Bulawayo. We like to call it the "King Compound" since Warren's parents and siblings also have homes on the property. It is a gorgeous place (more pics later) and was a welcoming and warm home base for us while we were in town. The Kings were still in South Africa when we arrived, but their housekeeper, Miriam made us feel very welcome and made us a delicious dinner. That night, we were able to relax, charge batteries, rest and even have a bit of fun. It was a good first day in Zimbabwe.

Here's a shot of Ryan playing in the King's backyard...

1 comment:

  1. Cool pics! It's hard for me to get my head around the money thing. I would rather just pretend I had millions in my hand.