A snippet, and out of order too, but things have got rather disorganised. Sorry.
We arrived at Shiwa after QUITE the bumpiest 3+ hour ride one could hope to survive! However, Tink and Jen, who had picked as up from Kasama were such pleasant company that we survived the adventure happily, full of wonder at their driving and the robustness of their Land Rover.
There is a longer in distance but shorter in time much better road apparently, but as our plane arrived at Kasama apparently there was little choice.
Power is limited (absolutely no WiFi!), bath water runs very slowly and is heated in drums over a log fire as I remember so well from my childhood. On the other side of the coin, Jo and Charlie Harvey (Charlie is Sir Stewart’s grandson) are the most generous and engaging of hosts, dinner is announced by a drum after drinks in the drawing room, and we are waited on. This is all just as I remember colonial life in my childhood, long now a thing of the past – for John and me anyway.
The visit to Shiwa is another reconnection with the past for me, the later visits I can remember vaguely, and I well remember Sir Stewart, but not Lady Gore Brown whom I hadn’t seen since I was young.
When I was a child we lived nearby (in African terms) and visited frequently. My mother had been at school with Lady Gore-Brown, and they had been good friends, my father was a friend and colleague of Sir Stewart. I have had great fun looking at their visitors’ books, and seeing photos of my parents and even one of me as a babe in arms in the garden at Shiwa!
Similarly, we brought my parents’ Visitors’ book so Charlie and Jo have been looking at his parents’ and grandparents’ signatures when they stayed with us where we lived, in a place called Mkushi.
4 thoughts on “Shiwa Ng’andu – a Snippet”
Hi Marion and John
Through the wonders of modern technology I’m sitting outside East Midlands Parkway station waiting for Deborah’s brother to ‘hand over’ her parents. They’re coming to stay with us for a couple of weeks.
It’s also given me a chance to catch up with you and your adventures – sounds like you’re having the most wonderful time !
We’ve thought of you several times this week: the EQM awards dinner, a sign for Parwich Wakes (afraid Parwich holds considerably less appeal in your absence), and also last night listening to opera in Bonsall church with Steve and Phil which we thought you would rather have enjoyed.
Things have been rather hectic here for the last couple of weeks as Deborah’s mother was taken ill – nothing to serious – which necessitated both of us shooting off to London to provide nursing care for Janice and supervisory care for Brian. Thank heavens for the marvellous Karen and Nigel who were able to step in at a moments notice.
As I mentioned they’re on their way up here – finally after 15 years they’ve agreed to have a downstairs toilet put into their house. We thought it was better for their (and Nick the builder’s) sanity if they’re out the way.
So that’s just about all our news. We look forward to reading about more of your adventures and hope you continue to enjoy your African road trip.
Much love from us both to you both. xxx
It was lovely to receive your lovely long email, as I sit beside the waters of Lake Malawi!! A bit more glamorous than EM airport but we only have a couple of precious days left and then we’ll be back boring you both rigid with all our big game stories (and they’re all true!). So sorry to read about Deborah’s parents. What a worry parents (speaking as one) can become! Please give them both our best wishes, and best love to you and Deborah.
Fantastic read…thanks Marion
Thanks Chris. The whole story is so interesting from all of our perspectives, with granny and grandpa’s connections. We took photos of their photos that the G-Bs had stuck in their Visitors’ Book – even one of your aunt wrapped in a shawl in granny’s arms!!! You’ll have to take Sadie and your children there one day when they are all a bit older. Open log fires in all the rooms and an erratic hot water supply might make it tricky now. Love to you all!