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Chris Garrett's blog

Wish you were here

Sitting here on my porch, at the Ghion Hotel, Bahirdar, in Ethiopia. I'm trying to write a blog, but struggling. I'm sitting in one of the most beautiful places I've ever been to, from here I can see flower filled gardens, the thatched round house that's a bar, and, beyond, the waters of Lake Tana. The trees of the garden are filled with an amazing variety of birds, so tame that I had to practically step over one the other day. Overhead there are scores of large 'buzzard' type birds, with a wing span of over a yard, they look like buzzards, but I guess they're some kind of vulture.

A massive step in donkey welfare

"Life is like a toilet roll, the nearer the end you get, the faster it goes" I read that somewhere just recently, and it appears to have lodged in my brain, now I hope I've still got a fair bit of roll left, at least a third or so, but it's so true, time flies past now, and I can't believe that I haven't done a blog since last august! (Probably a big relief to most of you, but I have had a few 'nudges' from both of my readers.)

"My donkey keeps us alive"

I usually keep my ramblings pretty general, but this time I'd like to tell you about a lady I met last week. I'm in Kenya at the moment, looking at the progress made with the harness since I was here in December last year.

During the week we've been away altering carts, meeting donkey owners and giving out harness for them to try. The harness has already been tested over the last six months and during the weekends Amos, the Kenyan Harness Co-ordinator, has been taking me around our original "Guinea Pigs". One of these was a lady called Ruth.

Pack saddle making

I reckon that one of the most common phrases in our language must involve the word 'tea'. "Shall I put the kettle on?", "Fancy a cuppa?", "Make a brew" we say, and do it without much thought really, some of us continually throughout the day.

Constant need to keep bricks flowing

Hi it's me again! I'd like to tell you a bit more about our work in the brick kilns of Egypt, but I'm not quite sure how to begin. I think I'd like to start by taking you back to my first month at the Sanctuary. I was supposed to have been going straight into Kenya, but, as you may remember, in January of last year they were in the middle of a political row that led to killings and massacres in many of the areas that we work in, and, two days before I was due to leave, the Sanctuary decided I shouldn't go.

Constant need to keep bricks flowing


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