Africa – the cradle of humanity

AFRICAN CONTINENT
Travel countries: Morocco
Experience: Concluding Africa trip with Moroccan tea in Casablanca

The trip is at its end… the last 300 kilometres of Africa. After having the 3rd cup of sugary Moroccan tea with concluding talks about Africa, sharing understandings and experiences with a curious and interesting American volunteer David, local boy with eyes shining from within came and unexpectedly kissed David’s forehead for three times. After a while follows a row of people asking for money to eat… Continue reading Africa – the cradle of humanity

Sierra Leone Diamonds

AFRICAN CONTINENT
Travel countries: Sierra Leone
Experience: diamonds market and civil war

Are diamonds forever?

DE BEERS – the company which used to hold 90 % of diamonds trade across the Globe, literally killing competitors for the ability to control supply and stimulate demand. In 1970s it established a massive agitation campaign in USA promoting the message for the society that diamonds are forever, creating an enormous value for this little shining piece of mineral. People started purchasing jeweller with diamonds, especially engagement rings, as a symbol of strong love and lifelong marriage. Until nowadays, diamond business remained monopolized, making money from the believe of people that as bigger the diamond in the ring, as longer the love will last. What is hiding behind this industry? Continue reading Sierra Leone Diamonds

Apolitical dances

AFRICAN CONTINENT
Travel countries: Guinea Bissau
Experience: (A)political dances
The end of December, 2013

By the time we were in Guinea Bissau, the country was being prepared for the President’s election: agitation campaigns were visible with posters of smiling candidates and promising quotes for better future. But election is not what I want to write about – it is just a general atmosphere of the country, to which I will shortly come back later. I want to share my experience about dancing. It sounds far away from politics, isn’t it? Continue reading Apolitical dances

Community Health workers

AFRICAN CONTINENT
Travel countries: Guinea Bissau
Experience: Community Health Workers

Healthy body – healthy soul
Guinea Bissau is one of the poorest countries in the World, facing problems in poverty, education, political stability, climate changes and health care. I suppose no country can expect stable development when people are dying faster than doctors are being educated. These thoughts occur often in developing countries, when mind is worried about finding issues and reasons. It has driven my persistence to answer the question
what is stopping the country from the sustainable health care development?
I started my investigation from an interview with a midwife Arminda, who works in remote islands of Guinea Bissau. For the whole group of islands with 25000 inhabitants there are 5 doctors and one hospital, Continue reading Community Health workers

Chasing Ice

Extreme Ice Survey project and documentary – stunningly beautiful, as well as frightening, visualising the climate change at cosmically increasing rate.

Partly filmed in Iceland, 10 kilometres from our ex-home, therefore we were intrigued to watch it. Now we got intrigued to share about it. Motivating idea, efforts to fulfil it, the results. And all this for only one simple reason: when your children are going to ask “What did You do to change all this what is happening?”, so you could answer:

“I did everything I could.”

Death drums

AFRICAN CONTINENT
Travel countries: Guinea Bissau
Experience: Funeral traditions

Drumming of death

I heard drumming that night… It would not sound like something odd in Africa if it had not been the 3rd night in a row of loud constant rhythm. We wanted to follow the sound, imagining wild African dances just around the corner. Fortunately, on our way one man stopped us and explained that it is funerals celebration.
Wow… I said, sit and thought for a while still truly amazed. Continue reading Death drums

You cannot pretend dance

AFRICAN CONTINENT
Travel countries: Senegal
Experience: Concert in Saint Louis

You cannot pretend dance

At the land of Art
In the night of Music
On the move of dance
For the sake of loosing.
Loosing fears and frames
To express inside you:
Who you are?
Who you are not?
And what are you afraid to?

The way they dance surprises you.
It is the way animals used to mate, too.
Without a drop of fears and shames,
Only the rhythm of drums floating through veins
And lyrics of freedom sound in your brains.
At that present moment your body and mind unites.

You can’t pretend freedom
Like you can’t pretend dance.

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Striking Guinea Conakry

AFRICAN CONTINENT
Travel countries: Guinea Conakry
Experience:

What does the strike says?

Guinea Conakry is the land of tension, corruption, political instability, trash and pollution; with the beauty of nature in contrast. This is the image in my head left after staying in Conakry for 4 days, waiting for visas of Sierra Leone. There is a saying that Africans does not have watches, but they have time. In the same way I could conclude that on this time you have, all the most unexpected things are highly possible to happen.

The capital city greeted us with all its “treasures” created by political instability. The second day in Conakry we had to drive back to our accommodation when the sun was already settled down. On the midway the road was blocked by cars traffic, Continue reading Striking Guinea Conakry

The longest desert train ride

AFRICAN CONTINENT
Travel countries: Mauritania
Experience: The longest train ride to the miners’ city

“It is difficult…”

How would you imagine, how many people wearing golden accessories think of workers in the gold mines? How many of them know that statistically to produce 1000 kg of gold takes away 1 life a miner and causes 10 serious injuries? Knowing Mauritania’s dependency on mining industry, I have chosen it to be my investigation topic. We got the first contact in Zourzazate, the miners’ city, completely dependent on iron ore. It took us 20 hours, 700 kilometers of interesting train ride Continue reading The longest desert train ride