When it rained

Who would have thought that this thirsty and bone dry land, racked with rib looking contours ready for planting maize, would look like this now – full to the brim with water; saturated and green?

Ominous black clouds with bellies like lead roll in and belt the countryside, lashing the bare, burnt and eroded hills. The cyclonic-like clouds keep coming; blowing in from all directions day after day, like the Gods of all religions have at last come together and answered the peoples prayers all at once.  It rains.


Mwanza river

The Mwanza river flowing for the first time in months.


Multicoloured umbrellas pop open alongside roads, paths and the lake shore. Children scream with excitement, ‘ the rain, it’s here!’
Cattle and goats enjoy the torrent of water rinsing their dusty coats. The ‘Lake flies’  gather in their millions and advance like a storm – smothering anything in their wake. Young maize seedlings drink up the water and sapling trees that have survived the annual ‘burn culture,’ experience their first flicker of hope. Soon the hills will be splotched with green; a lush topping of maize, grass and weeds. And for a few glorious days, life is good.

Walking in the rain

“We live in a world that is beyond our control, and life is in a constant flux of change. So we have a decision to make: keep trying to control a storm that is not going to go away or start learning how to live within the rain.”
– Glenn Pemberton

Storm coming

Senga Bay, Malawi

 Tub protection

Storm overhead

 “He in his madness prays for storms, and dreams that storms will bring him peace”

– Mikhail Lernmontov

Waves of baby maize

 ” A nation that destroys its soils destroys itself. Forests are the lungs of our land, purifying the air and giving fresh strength to our people.” – Franklin D. Roosevelt


But as if to punish, it does not stop. It gives all it’s got.  Soon the children tire of dancing in the rain and seek shelter in their hut, only to find all their clothes are damp and droplets of water splash on their faces as they look up to the roof for protection.

Rain face

“After every storm, there is a rainbow. If you have eyes, you will find it. If you have wisdom, you will create it. If you have love for yourself and others, you won’t need it.”
– Shannon L. Alder

Rain bath

“Mother,” they say, looking up at her expectantly, ‘when will the rain stop?”  She looks at them, their innocence and inexperience of troubled waters – pierces her protective heart. Having just heard the radio weather forecast, she looks up at the leaky roof and says, “I don’t know, but the sun will shine again.”

Boat bay