Year in review: What did I ship in 2010?

In the spirit of sharing what I was able to “ship” (i.e. get my work “out there”), here’s a list of things from 2010:

– Completed my 8 month Fellowship with the Aga Khan Foundation Canada. Survived (and occasionally thrived) my experience with a microfinance bank in Pemba, Mozambique.

– Joined VillageReach in Nampula, Mozambique after my Fellowship and administrated a project to promote propane among households. Over a 3-month period, we were able to sell 200 propane kits.

– Had an excellent summer back in Canada spending time with friends and family.

– Joined Me to We in September. Accomplished a number of things such as making my first sales of a overseas volunteer trip (now the count is at 7 or 8… I need to check this), helped establish over 100 contacts at a conference in Orlando, and put together two project proposals that I’ll ship in 2011.

OK, so not all of the things that I listed up there were things that I “shipped” in 2010 but I have to say that it’s been an adventure. I’ve learned about what I’m good at (e.g. planning out the details of something) and what I’m not (e.g. being flexible and observant).

I’m not sure how I’m going to to 2010 in 2011, but I suppose thinking that way is a self fulfilling prophecy. Instead of thinking that I’m going to try to “top” 2010, I’m just going to see what comes for 2011 and make the most of it. No need in comparing as each year is unique in itself.

So what did you ship in 2010? Think about it. You’ll have accomplished a lot more than you think. 🙂

Wedding!

Last week, I had the opportunity to go to one of my co-workers wedding. It was a really cool experience because it was held in a traditional Muslim style and I’d never been to a Muslim wedding before.

For the first part of the wedding, the men and women were separated. The men gathered for prayers at the local mosque while the women waited in a different location. It was neat to be able to listen in on the prayers (though I didn’t understand a thing) which had a certain melodic quality to it. Here are several pictures from the “men’s gathering”:

I believe this was the mosque's mullah opening the men's portion of the wedding ceremony

I believe this was the mosque's mullah opening the men's portion of the wedding ceremony

Ismael, the groom, is sitting in the middle

Ismael, the groom, is sitting in the middle

Ismael answering a series of questions (I'm thinking they were wedding vows or something)

Ismael answering a series of questions (I'm thinking they were wedding vows or something)

Once the men’s gathering was complete, we moved over to a house where dinner was to be served. The women were already there waiting, and it was the first opportunity for the bride and groom to see each other. What was interesting was how the bride was completely covered until the groom arrived to lift the veil.

The bride waiting for the groom

The bride waiting for the groom

Unveiling of the bride

Unveiling of the bride

After the unveiling, dinner was served to the guests and it was quite a feast. The dinner featured goat meat (in some kind of stew), rice, potatoes, chicken, and salad. Dessert was also fantastic as they had a whole bunch of delicious treats ranging from cakes to pudding. Suffice to say, I was stuffed by the end of it. After the dinner was the cake cutting ceremony (I guess that’s the same with Muslim and Christian traditions?)

Cake cutting!

Cake cutting!

Since the wedding was held on a week night, we had to head home early but it was a really neat event to experience. Hopefully there will be more to come in the future!

We’re back!

Hi folks!

So, the blog has been out of commission for the last little while (ahem, 3 weeks or so) since the internet at my house hasn’t been working. WELL, the good news is that the landlord has gotten us connection to a different router and we’re back in business. Yay! Much apologies for the lack/sporadic updating, and there’s quite a bit to catch up on. Hopefully I can cram as many posts before the end of this month so we can get you caught up.

Thanks and all the best from Mozambique!

p