A Hand-Delivered Kiva Fellow

3 February 2011 at 04:48 15 comments

Our trek across South Africa. Just kidding - this was a diorama at the Ladysmith Siege Museum.

As many a Kiva Fellow will tell you, sometimes things just seem to work out and it makes up for all the times they don’t.

Case in point: I showed up for my first day at Women’s Development Businesses (WDB) with mosquito bites all over my face, including one on my eyelid that made me look like I was suffering from some sort of paralysis. I didn’t have the correct adapter for my computer charger even though I bought the charger in South Africa. And I ran out of money on my pay-as-you-go 3G modem at noon so my computer didn’t have Internet for the rest of the day.

But I was able to take it in stride thanks to current fellow EB who has been guiding me since 6:30am last Sunday and hand-delivered me to the WDB offices yesterday. EB was in Cape Town for the weekend while my husband and I were wrapping up family time and trying to buy a car. We thought it could be fun and convenient to drive back to Richards Bay together and everything managed to fall perfectly into place despite our minimal planning.

Additionally, some people might think it’s crazy to spend over 24 hours in a car (that’s the driving time and doesn’t count breakfast, lunch, and dinner) with a total stranger but I was never concerned. Embarking on our three-day drive, I had every confidence that a fellow Fellow would make for great company and things were going to be awesome. In fact, the only thing that wasn’t awesome was my driving – I have an uncanny ability to hit potholes while trying to avoid them.

So, in conclusion, I hope that if any of you find yourself on a road-trip with a relative stranger, that person is as laid-back and interesting as a Kiva Fellow.

Alexis Ditkowsky (KF14) works with Women’s Development Businesses in KwaZulu-Natal, South Africa. Check out WDB’s lending team and stay tuned for new loans on their lending page.

The clouds in South Africa are spectacular

Thunderstorm in the Karoo

Trying to draw on bumpy Karoo roads isn't easy

Entry filed under: Africa, blogsherpa, KF14 (Kiva Fellows 14th Class), South Africa, Womens Development Businesses (WDB). Tags: , , , , , , , , , .

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15 Comments

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  • 8. Ben  |  8 February 2011 at 02:12

    A twenty-four-hour drive? Ouch.

  • […] back to Richards Bay – 24 hours of driving across three days and four provinces. (You can read Alexis’s great post about our road trip and her start at WDB.) A mountain pass in the Eastern Cape Landscape passing […]

  • 10. Lee A. Ditkowsky  |  3 February 2011 at 16:31

    Great to talk with you…even better seeing pictures of the environment you are working in. Can’t wait to see the people.
    Much love, Dad.

    • 11. Alexis Ditkowsky  |  3 February 2011 at 22:26

      Thanks! Should have some people pics in my next post.

  • 12. Sass  |  3 February 2011 at 09:26

    Lovely to read news of my home country seen through the eyes of my daughter in law! Love you. Sass

    • 13. Alexis Ditkowsky  |  3 February 2011 at 22:24

      Thanks, Sass! Hope you’ll be able to join us in a few months.

  • […] diorama (aren’t they all?) As promised, my latest post for Kiva is now live. Dioramas, driving in the Karoo, and mosquito bites on my face are among the […]

    • 15. Martin Plaut  |  29 April 2011 at 01:17

      I really enjoyed your descriptions of Kwa-Zulu Natal and the women you met. And your lovely drawings – especially of the Karoo. As a South African now living in London I am keen to see my old country prosper. Just sad to see it also falling into bad old ways, with many remaining so very poor and a very few getting so, so rich. A class divide replacing a racial one.


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