After a few calm days of settling in and getting to know my new surroundings a little bit, I am now ready to start my research. Yesterday afternoon, my supervisor and I went for a little drive, to see the river which I will study. Ah, the surreal feeling of bumping along a red dirt road in a 4WD, across a mountainous African landscape, and having little children waving and shouting 'Muzungu, muzungo', exactly as I was told they would do. And to see all the mango, avocado and papaya trees scattered over the farmlands.
And so we arrived to Likangala, a small perennial river. Especially small this time of year, in the dry season. The river flows through agricultural land, down passed the main road, the hospital and through the south part of Zomba where effluents from the wastewater treatment plant join in. It seems like the road works wont be an issue in the end, which is great news.
Likangala River, with some children swimming.
My job is to survey the land use and specific activities along a particular stretch of the river, analyze water samples for physiochemical parameters and try to connect the two. Still intimidated, but I'm starting to feel that I can actually make this happen!
The muzungu herself!