In Step with The Rain
Nowhere else have I seen that people adapt their schedules to the rain as they do here on the coast. We have waited long for a steady and yielding rain, after the short season from October to December last year was over after a few days of rain only. When it finally came, men and women took their hoe and their machete and went to their fields, even when it was still raining.
Around 80% of the working people in the region of Lindi are smallholders and the rain is their only system of irrigation. Little rain - small harvest. It is as easy as this. No harvest - no sales - no income. Then people lack basic things, and even in good times many people are already poor.
Kilimo Timilifu, our partner here, is working diligently to bring about a change, to improve the infrastructrue and to provide a better market for the people in the communities. But all, by the end of the day, is dependent on rain. Rain determins the time of planting, thus the time and quantity of harvest. With it, the production. So when the rain begins here, the daily routine changes - from one day to the next.
Since mid January it has been raining continuasly and strong. The past three days, however, were dry and hot again. We hope that rainfall will pick up through the month of February. If you pray, do pray. If you don't, hope the best for us.
Featured photo: On the street from Mchinga Mbili to Mchinga Moja. (Evelyn Breitenbach)