17 April 2011


Day 6: 16 April – Catching up with old friends...

Today we awarded ourselves a little R&R time beside the pool at the hotel. So this is what they call 'holidaying'! Very restful it was too, but somehow, after a few hours we were in need of more entertainment. So, accompanied by Chris (for the second time!) we headed off to visit the family compound of a very good gardener we happen to know, by the name of Abdoulie. He has been conducting an experiment for us to see how easy it is to grow Artemesia plants, and to see if he could raise new plants from the seedlings. Abdoulie and his family welcomed us with huge smiles, and we were all shown round his truly impressive garden to see a good variety of food crops, ranging from tomato to parsley, cashew and lettuce. He had taken great care to plant the Artemesia in a sheltered and secluded spot, and told us how his own family and several neighbouring families had benefitted from the anti-malarial properties of these plants throughout the rainy season and beyond last year. He is well on the way to raising a new crop for this year. We gave him a second experiment in the form of a self-watering system (large bucket, lots of hose, string and sealant!) to see what he can do with these. We are sure he will have some fun making this work!

Next to the Manneh family who had specially invited us for lunch. One of our favourite families, not least because they have, with some help from PAGEANT members, been able to pick themselves up from sheer despair after their father died very suddenly, and also have a really brilliant attitude to education, and a strong work ethic. They also happen to be a very attractive family, full of fun and laughter, and their hospitality was amazing! Fresh fruits to eat on our arrival were swiftly followed by a delicious fish lunch, as they all told us of the various jobs that they were doing, whilst still studying at school and college courses. The youngest daughter, too young to work as yet, had come first in both her school Grade 5 and exam. The whole family were so proud of her, as are we!

Back to the hotel for a small supper, and an early night! Lots of love x x x

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