27 April 2009

A Chiure Homestead

This is the homestead of my friend, Pastor Rodrigues, in Chiure, Moçambique. The first picture shows his home and the following two show his children. It's been about 5 or 6 years since the pictures were taken, so I'm sure the children are much bigger now. That's the nature of children. They tend to grow up.

25 April 2009

Caídas de Lúrio

In northern Moçambique in the Chiure District there is a picturesque waterfall on the Lúrio River known as the Caídas de Lúrio. It is practically inaccessible during the rainy season. I visited in the dry season when the water flow was low. Even with low water, it is a beautiful waterfall. I can only imagine what it is like when the water is high.

Enjoy these impressions of the Caídas de Lúrio.

ANC is denied two-thirds majority

Good news for South Africa. At least for now the ANC cannot become a ZANU-PF.

Read: ANC is denied two-thirds majority

Every country needs a strong opposition to protect the majority party. Pray that the ANC will govern on behalf of the people and not themselves.

20 April 2009

Banjo Roots: U.S.-Mali Fusion

U.S. banjo player Bela Fleck has done a documentary and made an album tracing the American banjo to its African roots. He was recently on NPR with Malian kora master Toumani Diabate discussing the project and playing together.

Visit: Bela Fleck And Toumani Diabate: Banjo Roots at NPR to hear some of the studio music and tracks from the new album Throw Down Your Heart.

This is some great fusion music.

Profiting from Zimbabwe's 'blood diamonds'

Mugabe got involved in the Congo war in order to enrich himself and his friends with mineral wealth. Many leading soldiers began to seek diamonds. Now diamonds are found in Zimbabwe and he uses the military and police to seize control of them and to enrich himself and friends even more.

Read the BBC report "Profiting from Zimbabwe's 'blood diamonds'" for the story. Stop the sale of blood diamonds worldwide.

Meanwhile, Botswana is cutting diamond production. Read the BBC report: "Gem producer Botswana cuts output".

19 April 2009

Good Music

Tananas used to make some of the best music before the untimely death of Gito Baloi.


18 April 2009

Olduvai Gorge

In 1960 I got my first subscription to National Geographic Magazine. That year there was an article that fascinated me greatly. It was about the discovery of Australopithecus boisei, or Zinjanthropus man, by Louis Leakey in Olduvai Gorge in Tanganyika. Little did I dream that about 10 years later I would have the privilege of visiting the site.

Olduvai Gorge

Olduvai Gorge

Olduvai Gorge

The site of the discovery of Zinjanthropus man.

Leakey's assistant, I believe his name is Francis, showing the major excavation site at the time of my visit. It was covered to protect it from the elements.

Small markers indicate fossils being carefully excavated from the site.

A portion of a leg bone of a prehistoric elephant.

Almost any stone lying around contained fossilized remains.

I later was able to see the Zinjanthropus man skull at the National Museum in Dar es Salaam, Tanzania.

04 April 2009

Fort Jesus

Construction of Fort Jesus began in 1593 on Mombasa Island. The Portuguese moved to Mombasa from their trading base at Malindi along with the local ruler of Malindi.

For almost a century and a half the Portuguese based their activities along the eastern coast of Africa in Fort Jesus.

In March 1696 a fleet from Oman laid siege to Fort Jesus for 33 months.

Fort Jesus came under the rule of Oman.

This ended Portuguese rule north of the Rovuma River.

In 1699, 1703 and 1710 unsuccessful efforts were made by the Portuguese to retake Fort Jesus.

The Portuguese did retake the fort in 1728, but surrendered it again to the Arabs in 1729.

The British came upon the scene in the early 1800's as they began efforts to stop the slave trade.

Mombasa was a British Protectorate for a couple of years and then annexed to the sultanate of Zanzibar.

When the British colonized Kenya, they used the fort as a prison for a while.

In 1958 the fort was declared an historical monument.

James Kirkman (center above) excavated the fort from 1958-1971.
(He also excavated the ruins at Gedi.)