Monthly Archives: May 2015

Potted Avocado

The Avocado is potted and the sapling is growing fast. Another stone has sprouted – after months of nothing we’re getting somewhere.IMG_1491

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Weekly Photo Challenge: On the Way

In response to The Daily Post’s weekly photo challenge: “On the Way.”

Mathis weekend we are staying at Wag Hill Lodge, near to Mwanza, but a million miles away. We are here celebrating our twentieth anniversary.  Here are some pictures from on the way.<ahref=”https://tanzalongs.files.wordpress.com/2015/05/image8.jpg”&gt;image image image image image image

Weekly Photo Challenge: Broken Bones

A different take on this Week’s Photo Challenge: Broken.

On 26th January 2012 my wife, Anita, was cycling to work. It was a little icy that day and thankfully she wore her cycle helmet. Near to work she turned 90° as she approached an underpass and the bike slipped from underneath her – she fell off the bike at high speed.

I was at work when I got the call – half way through a Year 11 ICT lesson, Carol (one of our administrators) approached the door and beckoned me outside. To be disturbed mid-lesson was unusual, to be disturbed half way through a year 11 lesson unheard of. I left the room to hear the news – Anita had been knocked off her bike and rushed to hospital. The thoughts that ran through my mind as I made a quick exit and drove the 45 minute journey home. The first call was to Anita’s parents. The sudden shock of the news and the request they come quickly. At the time my work in Thame was at least 45 minutes away from home and on frosty roads even longer than that. The next call was to Anita’s sister – living in Northampton, a mere 2o minutes up the M1 from Milton Keynes. She would be there before I was.

Arriving at the A&E department at MK General, I found her – the helmet had been severely dented but there were no head injuries. Her arm had been less lucky. The impact of the fall had shattered both Radius and Ulna.

Thankfully passers by had come to her aid – ironically one was a theatre nurse in the hospital, a parent from the same school as my daughter and who would later on be in the theatre when she had the operation.

The broken bones were screwed together with plates and after a 4 hour operation I received news (at gone midnight) that everything was OK.

Months of physiotherapy followed and initially there were positive signs of movement. However as time progressed things were not looking good. The bones were growing too much and were pushing on the wrist. In July of 2013 a second operation took place to purposely break the bone, remove a section and re-plate.

This took place a few weeks before I was due to travel to Vietnam / Cambodia. We had agreed I should travel and so I did. One morning in Buon Ma Throut I awoke to the news that her bones had broken whilst in the cast. A further emergency operation was required and an new plate fitted.

Nearly two years on the bones are healed, though the movement of the left arm is significantly reduced.

In years to come the longer plate may need to be removed.  An incident which occured in a split second has had an impact lasting many years.

Weekly Photo Challenge: Broken Records

A different take on this Week’s Photo Challenge: Broken. Taken back in 2008 during the Beijing Olympics via our TV Set. Not sure why now but took some pictures of Rebecca Adlington winning Gold and breaking the then world record for her swimming event (800m Women’s Freestyle).

Malaika Beach Resort

It’s a bit of a treat and so it’s something we do only occasionally. The forecast was great and even  though the morning was cloudy it soon burned back to a glorious blue sky by midday. Time to head off to Malaika Beach Resort.

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You can’t swim in Lake Victoria – the water is too polluted and full of Bilharzia, but the lakeshore offers stunning views. Entry to Malaika Beach Resort is 2000 TZS per head (63p) which is enough to make the place exclusive so they say. You get this back as a drink (a soda or money off a beer). the real expense is the pool, but it is worth it. For the four of us it was 60000TZS ,(approx £19). It is a sign of the times (and my wage here) that this price makes it an occasional trip not a regular visit. Once inside the place was virtually empty – of course although  yesterday was a school break it was not a Public Holiday here and so most were at work. We had a fabulous afternoon in the pool.

      

  

                

   The surroundings at Malaika are really pleasant too.  

                    After an afternoon at the pool we decided to have a meal whilst watching the sunset. The food is in truth not the best but it wasn’t poor either. Even so the surroundings are stunning and we saw a great sunset.  

 








   A great end to a great day!

  

 

 

Wailing Ibis

What you can hear is the sound of a pair of Hadada Ibis in the tree behind our house (along with some cockerels). They make a lot of noise. In fact they are noisier when in flight when the calls you hear  are continuous, it’s much more tricky to capture that sound as they appear from nowhere.

I have come to associate life in Mwanza with the sound of these glossy green black birds – they are everywhere here, though thankfully they don’t always make this noise.

It’s In The Trees!

We have Bats in our Mango tree – I say our, it’s just outside our garden but on the compound where  we live. I was taking photos for my previous post (Broken Branches) when I noticed them. I was able to snap some clear photos of them roosting and some fuzzier ones of them in flight. They are very fast and silent flyers so I will need to be patient and get some more focused ones in the future.

Incidentally, the phrase “It’s in the trees” comes from a Kate Bush song “Hounds of Love”.  It’s a bit of a catch-phrase in the family – it’s usually followed incorrectly by “When I was child”, The origin is over twenty years old from a time in Milton Keynes when a group of us (twenty somethings) gathered for a weekly Friday video night – it was probably coined by a guy called Richard, who knows why? Over time it was used by my brother (an occasional visitor to the video night) and I and later my kids. No rhyme or reason! I have wanted to use it in a blog post – so here it is. “It’s In The Trees!”