Drawing Challenge #9

The aim is to do as many detailed drawings as possible, as often as possible, to fill up my sketchbook by the end of the year.


54 years ago today, Zambia gained independence from Britain – A costly victory as many lost their lives in the pursuit of freedom for fellow countrymen and women.

For today’s drawing challenge, I’ve chosen a symbolic sketch from the capital city, Lusaka. It is of the “Independence Banner” as you enter the city from the airport road.

The colours of the flag signify the following:

  • Green – The beautiful green landscape across the country
  • Orange – Mineral wealth (mainly copper)
  • Black – Majority of the population
  • Red – The blood shed in the fight for independence
  • The Eagle – We can sore above our differences (incl tribalism) and be, as first president Kenneth Kaunda called it – “One Zambia, One Nation!”

Time-lapse sketch

Best of 2017: Blog Info-graphics

Abstract: As we are fast approaching the end of another year, its time for another annual blog review. I wanted to take this opportunity to thank each one of you for being a part of my journey with Reposed Thought. Your engagement and encouragement have been invaluable, and spur me on as a writer, designer and poet. Many thanks.

With so much to learn from, to be thankful for and to be challenged by, here are the stats from 2017 – the stuff you really cared about. Enjoy.

God bless.

Top 10 Posts:

Top 10 Blog Posts

  1. RT Evening Standard nomination: Best new-comer April Fools!! Lesson One – don’t believe everything you read on 1st April. On the flip side, I had lots of fun listening to friends congratulate me before reading further.. 😀
  2. 20 Favourite Poetic One-Liners (Rhyming) A compilation of my favourite lines from poems that I’ve composed. Enjoy!
  3. Love Your Neighbour- Short Poem Written  to go with a sermon from the bible passage Matthew 22:34-40.
  4. Zambia: Day Eleven – Final Goodbye Day eleven of 12: Part of a daily photography journal I kept whilst visiting my home country, Zambia.
  5. Zambia: Day One – Welcome HomeDay one of 12: Excitement, anticipation, reality. All the initial reactions & emotions of visiting home after 5 years.
  6. Screen Watching on the Train Reflections on this generations growing and worrying mobile phone addiction
  7. Zambia: Day Two – Copperbelt Day two of 12: Returning to my home city after 5 years; such a good feeling!
  8. Zambia: Day Five – Last of Kitwe Day five of 12: After a few days on the Copperbelt Province, it was time to head back.   
  9. London Bishopsgate – Walking Tour Photographic tour with a friend in one of the capital’s high-rise districts, Bishopsgate.
  10. 7 Days in B&W 7 days, 7 photo’s in black and white; No people. No explanations.

Top 10 Countries:

Top 10 Countries

Visitors to the blog came from a grand total of 53 different countries in 2017.

Countries as wide ranging as Venezuela, Namibia, Solomon Islands and Bulgaria. Thank you!

Most Popular Month:

Most Popular Month

April was by far the busiest month this year. This is mainly because of the ‘April Fools’ post and the daily photo journal of my trip to Zambia, my home country.


Stay tuned for more content in 2018.

Happy New Year!


“The Lord is my shepherd; I shall not want.
He makes me lie down in green pastures.
He leads me beside still waters.
He restores my soul.”

PSALM 23

Zambia: Day Ten – Recuperation

Background: Recent extracts from my travel journal taken at the end of each day whilst on holiday in Zambia, my home country. Enjoy!

Day Ten:

After all the pacing around of the last few days, today was a much needed rest day. The only trip of significance was to a local clinic. Along the way, we past through Ibex Hill, a residential area with some beautiful homes. Here are a few of them.









More to follow soon..

Peace

Zambia: Day Nine – Heaven’s Opened

Background: Recent extracts from my travel journal taken at the end of each day whilst on holiday in Zambia, my home country. Enjoy!

Day Nine:

What a change it was. From boiling hot one day, to a heavy downpour the next.

Today was the first day of our trip that it rained, and my goodness did it. It’s the rainy season at the moment in Zambia and the rains provide some spectacular scenery with thunder storms and lightening.

Dealing with customer services was a tad frustrating today, but we met two brilliant cab drivers along the way who made for interesting conversation.

FNB bank at Arcades Shopping Mall. Not long before the heavy downpour.

All we could do was wait for it to settle down. Not really a day for taking pictures.

As it wasn’t a day to be out and about, there was only one place to hang out. My favourite take away from back in the day. Now it felt a bit too greasy but still lush!

Zambia: Day Eight – Out And About

Background: Recent extracts from my travel journal taken at the end of each day whilst on holiday in Zambia, my home country. Enjoy!

Day Eight:

Today was possibly the busiest day of the whole trip as we dashed around Lusaka, visiting lots of family and friends. Some for two minutes, some for two hours. Each reunion memorable.

Not sure what building this is, but it had a “government complex” sort of feel, or something for “officials.” It looks like a building symbolic of power with its solid, concrete face overlooking us commoners that dared to pass by.

This building is next to Arcades Mall just off Great East Road.


Hotel (I think) behind Arcades.

New office tower under construction. Took it from a different angle yesterday.

And finally, we passed through Manda Hill shopping mall, built several years ago as the first of many in Zambia. It had a major facelift since it’s original design to help keep up with the newer, more plush malls like Levy Junction and East Park Mall.

Zambia: Day Six – Goodbye Copperbelt

Background: Recent extracts from my travel journal taken at the end of each day whilst on holiday in Zambia, my home country. Enjoy!

Day Six:

Like the saying goes “all good things come to an end.” Today marked the end of our Copperbelt adventure and it was time to say goodbye. It felt like I was leaving with a renewed love for my home town. Despite things that still need to be done, it feels like it’s heading in the right direction.


Lots of good quality residential developments going up everywhere. This one was on the outskirts of Kitwe.

Back on the road again headed for Ndola.

Clear run of open road ahead. Dual carriageway between Kitwe and Ndola. Once the traffic clears, this is a sweet road to drive on.

Back to Ndola..


And past this place again.


Kafubu Mall, Ndola: With the rise of Zambia’s middle class, a lot more people have disposable cash to spend. This has in turn led to the massive explosion in construction, mainly residential but also in retail. At times it may seem like overkill, but if that’s where the demand lies, then investors would be mad not to cash in. The main concern, however, is that most retailers are foreign owned companies (predominently giant South African chain stores). For a more in-depth look at this issue, take a look at this video on Zambia Construction – Doing business in Africa.


Zambia’s 6th president, HE Mr Edgar Chagwa Lungu.

This poster is on your way to Simon Mwansa Kapwepwe International Airport and must be a few years old now as the election was in January 2015.

18 Seater Plane..


Till next time Copperbelt, Mi Casa. It’s been a pleasure. Now back to the capital city Lusaka for more of these blue skies.. It’s really like that everyday!

All my qualms about the tiny 56 seater on the way here were quashed by the even smaller 18 seater. You could see the pilot (or driver). 

Lsk..

No fancy sunset shot to end the day on, just a set of grateful travellers having arrived safely.

Join me again tomorrow for day seven.

Peace

Zambia: Day Five – Last of Kitwe

Background: Recent extracts from my travel journal taken at the end of each day whilst on holiday in Zambia, my home country. Enjoy!

Day Five:

Today was spent visiting PIZ College on the outskirts of Kitwe.

The morning was a lot colder and had more of a UK vibe about it with a cool breeze and lingering clouds.


We managed to pass through my primary school again as it opened (twice in one week). It’s like I was going back to school. #goodtimes

Old home..


Whenever I’ve been back to Zambia, I’ve had the privilege of passing through my childhood home.

In my second year studying architecture, we had to draw a house plan from memory of our childhood. So many memories flooded back as I walked through the house in my mind, remembering all the cool little hide and seek spots.


Gated communities and wall-fenced houses are the most common housing type in Zambia, mainly for security reasons and the vast availability of land. The more plush and expensive types can be seen as symbolic of ones status – i.e. having ‘made it’ in life.

PIZ College..


PIZ is a college that seeks to train and develop church leaders in bible handling with the purpose of growing them in their different leadership roles. We got to spent the day there and met some of the lovely and enthusiastic students.

img_1202

Out and about on road in Kitwe.

Old church..

Our former church in Kitwe looked absolutely stunning. There had been some renovation done internally and externally since my last trip and it looked in good shape. Unfortunately it was mid week and no one was there, but great non-the-less to touch base and be in the place where my Christian journey began.

Evening..

Fresh fish being prepared for dinner.. Mmm lush!

And yet another perfect sunset to end another beautiful day. So grateful to be back at home to enjoy such weather.

More from the trip to follow.. #loading…

Zambia: Day Two – Copperbelt

Background: Recent extracts from my travel journal taken at the end of each day whilst on holiday in Zambia, my home country. Enjoy!


Day Two:

Another day, another trip. This time to my hometown of Kitwe from the capital city, Lusaka. Part 1 of the journey involved flying to Ndola from Lusaka (my first ever domestic flight within Zambia). This reduced a 4 hour + journey right down to 30-45 mins. Amazing!

Ndola, Zambia’s third largest city


Ndola still had the same vibe about it even after all this time. Lots of new developments spawning around, except at a far slower pace than Lusaka. Then again, Lusaka is in its own bracket.

The Levy Mwanawasa Stadium, named after the country’s late 3rd president, stands proudly alongside the Ndola to Kitwe carriageway. We arrived in Zambia the day after the Under 20’s national team had won the U20’s Africa Cup of Nations (or Afcon 2017). Days earlier, this impressive stadium hosted the semi final match between Senegal and Guinea.

The last time I visited Zambia in 2012, Zambia won the senior Africa Cup of Nations. If I was superstitious, I’d draw parallels betweeen my trips home and us winning tournaments and make my next trip during the Russia 2018 World Cup… 😁 who knows what could happen.

Anyway, I digress. This was Zambia’s maiden attempt at hosting a continental tournament and we won. Speaking on behalf of all Zambians ever born, this filled us with such immense joy and pride. #onetake

Ndola to Kitwe


Although tired and exhausted, it was such a joy to see familiar faces waiting to meet and greet us on arrival. So much catching up happened that picture taking became secondary, hence all the pictures on the road.

Today was the first day back to work for most people after a long weekend off.

Kitwe, at last…


And what a great feeling it was to enter my hometown after 5 years. That elevated view as you cross the Kafue River and the police wave you on; that petrol station by the Ndeke village roundabout; the unintentional shared space aspect of the road as pedestrians and cars converge; The nostalgia, the goosebumps, the memories all flooded back in as every single turn had its own unique memory. At last, I knew I was home.

Home sweet home


Nice to see a new road connecting Ndeke Village to Nkana East residential area. If you know Kitwe well, you know that it makes sense to have.

Finally, a chance to rest and reflect on the day gone by while eagerly anticipating the days ahead. The rest of the evening was relaxed, spent enjoying family and friends alike.

Join me tomorrow to find out what adventure lay ahead on day three..

God bless

“I will give thanks to you, Lord, with all my heart; I will tell of all your wonderful deeds.” (Psalm 9:1)

Zambia: Visiting ‘home-home’

Background: Join me for the next few weeks as I share retrospectively this most recent adventure.. to Zambia!!!!!


As I scrolled through the on-board ‘easy-listening’ music section, I came across a song from the archives of my primary schools music rooms called “morning has broken.” Rather than send me to sleep, as I presume was the intention of this mix, it suddenly woke up my mind.

This unexpected memory conjured up lots of mixed emotions all at once; some happy, some sad. While the memory of this song took me to a very ‘happy place’ in my life, sat down singing along to Mr Banda (my music teacher) tinkering away on the keys, I was also reminded of the harsh reality of going back home. The thought that certain loved ones were now no more. Certain people from that ‘happy place’ I would never see again.

See, I was on my way home, or ‘home-home’ as I’ve come to know it. The place of my birth, home to my ancestors, where most of my loved ones live, you get the picture. It had been a good few years since I last visited and so much had changed since then. I was eagerly anticipating many reunions, picturing the warm embrace of friends and family, reuniting with roasted maize from the roadside, etc. But this lingering thought and reality check suddenly buried all my warm, happy thoughts. It was the sudden death of my beautiful and bright young cousin, Towela, at 32 which particularly shook me and reminded me of the uncertainty of life (see Words I Never Said: Short Poem).

While thinking of this, my mind wondered back to my primary school, this time remembering all my friends. How many would I be able to see during this trip? It had been at least 5 years since I last saw some, but 14 for the majority. How would we even relate to each other as grown ups? Would we slip back into old friendships? All these questions and more ran through my mind. No doubt social media had helped lessen the impending shock at seeing people after so long, beards and all.

All in all, its safe to say I was super excited and buzzing at the prospect of going home. There I was smiling to myself, eyes shut, head phones on, simply wishing the pilot could speed up.


Such is the power of thought trails.

Let them run their course as you jot them down and see where they’ll take you. This post was born out of the song ‘morning has broken’ which immediately had me grinning at its memory.