Every now and again events conspire to make one realise that what is taken for granted is actually not so stable or certain. I frequently have encounters with time that make this real for me. My most recent experience occurred on a trip I took to Tunisia, where the certainty of the calendar and what constitutes the start of a year was called into question. The Georgian calendar (the one used as the global civil calendar) will for many of us be taken for granted as the way to structure time, yet it does not map onto the cultures and traditions of the majority of the world’s population, and upon reflection I realise only has partial influence upon how I consider my own year. Through the experience of a collision of calendars one can sometimes also be afforded the chance to consider and reflect on the gifts of serendipitous circumstance, as I was when my personal calendar, the muslim calendar, and assumptions I made based on the Georgian calendar all came together. Continue reading
Category Archives: Africa
Metaphor of the down escalator: Zimbabwe and the decent into food insecurity.
What, you may ask, does a shopping mall in Hong Kong have to do with the food situation in Zimbabwe? Well, I’ll tell you. When we first moved to Hong Kong, people told me that Grace Mugabe has been frequently spotted shopping at this mall. Apparently the Mugabe’s have a house in a development known as The Beverly Hills in Hong Kong. True or not, I am not certain. There is clear evidence that the Mugabe’s have access to cash and a will to spend it. What is also certain is that the situation in Zimbabwe is still critical as the industry is in free fall (see this report) and the UN World Food Programme is predicting that the upcoming months will bring the worst ‘Hunger Season’ in years (see the report (here). Continue reading
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