Tag Archives: Cake

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I don’t even like halloumi (I only ever eat it to be polite) – and yet, here, in the Desert of Dairy Products, I would quite joyfully sell my own liver for some of the salt rubber cheese.
But all is well for my calcium deprived self because my days here are numbered – it’s the final countdown - again. In six days time I will be touching down in London town.
But good news, the sweat, tears and prayers have been worth it because WE GOT SOME FUNDING Y'ALL! By some literal miracle we will be able to do a little work on the waiting shed so that all the patients fit inside while they wait to register, it stays dry when it rains and keeps cool when it hot. Praise Jesus and well done team!
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The waiting shed: weighed, measured and found wanting
In other good news, I finally finished uploading the new video to the correct Youtube channel (don’t ask... but now you mention it – it takes over a day to upload, that’s all I'm saying... but I uploaded it to the wrong channel, enough said... it took all my self control not to fling my computer and the internet router out the window and into the path of on oncoming donkey cart. 5 points to me for developing self control and growing in patience). Anyway, feast your eyes and heart upon this:

Shout out to fellow volunteer Benni who filmed, edited and graciously tolerated all my suggested edits and our subsequent artistic differences.
I must confess, over the past few months I’ve given you the edited highlights and not every day has been filled with unicorns, rainbows and gin fountains but part of me will miss being here, particularly:
  • Being amazed at how calmly sheep and goats will travel strapped on top of a mini bus going atleast 70kmph (this is a guesstimate because anytime I've been sat near the driver the speedo has never been working).
  • The novelty of pretty much everything.
  • People. I will miss my Sibanor people.
  • Ironed bedsheets.
  • The abundance of mangoes, sunshine, brightly coloured birds and unusual flowers. Top of my birthday list is now a Frangipani tree (evidence I am turning in to my mother number 5,674,374).
  • Appreciation for all the things I have taken for granted – running water, electricity, a flushing toilet, hot water for a shower, a fridge, a freezer, internet, health and safety regulations (hate me coz I'm beautiful but I'm yet to see any fire exit signs). I  am much more thankful, I realise this will probs wear off after a few days. I will miss  daily reminders of dependence on God's provision and thankfulness for what I have received. God is good all the time. All the time, God is good.
  • Village life – everyone knowing everyone, the slower pace and living in the present because if its not in the village does it even exist?
Shout out to Anorthe for this photo
Shout out to Anorthe for this photo
Things I will actually not miss:
  • Village life – everyone knowing everyone, the slower pace, living in the present because if its not in the village does it even exist?
  • That cockerel that is still waking us all up way way before dawn. A suitable candidate for the main course of my leaving party perhaps?
  • The novelty of pretty much everything.
  • The precariousness of public transport - remind me to tell you about the time an ACTUAL VULTURE CRACKED THE WINDSCREEN as we were driving along in a minibus.
  • The many many many offers of marriage – so many I've stopped counting and its no longer amusing. I now just lie and say I’m already married.
  • Lack of access to dairy products. Once I'm home you will find me swimming in milk, making sculptures out of yoghurt and rolling around on a bed of cheese.
  • The guilt of privilege. Can't deny it, life here is hard for many people. Mine is not.
  • The guilt of eating a whole tapalapa in one sitting even though everytime I was definitely going to leave half for lunch and some for dinner.
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This is about a foot long.
So, there we go, four months in The Gambia nearly over and out. I don't know whether to laugh or cry so I think I'll just go ahead and do both - brb.
SEE YOU SOON TEAM! And don't forget to bring a cake to my surprise welcome home party  - its gonna be the best cake buffet you've ever seen! x x
P.S. Organising Committee - please include a cake buffet.

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So I wouldn't say I live in the 'hood exactly. I wouldn't say that I lived in a dodgy area. And if you knew how much our rent was you'd probably think that we lived in a 'gated-community' with a butler, en suite rooms, private gym, walk in wardrobes a la Princess Diaries (a girl can dream), roof-top garden, actual garden, and view of the Thames/Buckingham Palace/Eiffel Tower.
But we don't.

What we do have is a bunch (gang?) of guys who like to hang around in the courtyard  between the building where I live and the one opposite - and they do lower the tone rather. Here's us trendy hipsters trying (well not really trying because that wouldn't be ironic) to raise standards to oversized glasses frames, good coffee and creative alternatives but our efforts seem to be in vain - they do not care for such things. *sigh*

One or two will usually surface around lunchtime and by 8/9pm there's at least ten guys smoking, eating chicken, dropping litter and riding around on Boris Bikes until the early hours of the morning. I'm not sure of half of what they do, but the half I am sure of fo' sure ain't legal. Sometimes leaving the flat or coming home can be stressful when you know that you might have to walk past them, which is kinda ridiculous because they rarely say anything to you. And sometimes they do share useful security facts about how they watched some guy stealing bikes from the building - but didn't bother to stop him.

Whether I like it or not they are part of my community. They are literally on my doorstep, quite often blocking the way to the door - but when they realise you want to get into the building they generally move out the way without you even having to ask - see, they're nice boys really I'm sure.

Which poses the question of how to solve the problem of the dealers at your door? We've (flatmates and I) been wondering about this alot lately. Do we:

A. Ignore them? Fix your eyes on the floor/anywhere but them and purposefully walk past as if they're not there? Which is just ridiculous because it's obvious that you've seen them. 

B. Befriend them? I'm not even sure if this is possible.

C. Report them? The Police come every now and again, sometimes they search them and other times they don't. Not gonna lie - it can actually be quite entertaining, especially when they start complaining to the police about other people who 'lower the tone' but other times it's hard to watch.

D. Make them a cake - my standard solution to everything.

>E. Other. Suggestions on a postcard please.

So far we've gone for a mixture or A and B, depending on how brave we're feeling and how much weed we can smell. Not gonna lie I mostly go for A - ignore them. But braver flatmates than me have got them to carry heavy suitcases of groceries up two flights of stairs to the flat. And another one has had a long enough chat to discover that one of them really loves his girlfriend and would do anything for her but because their families are from different countries no-one wants them to be together or get married - you see, I'm sure they're nice boys really.

Apart from the noise they don't give us much trouble (although remind me to tell you about the Great Litter and Chicken Wing Debates) but it would be nice if any guest who arrives or leaves after 7pm didn't have to pass some Iron-man Bravery Contest just to get to our door.

Any ideas?

A couple of weeks ago I went to visit a friend in Hove and as we wandered into Brighton we happened up a few stalls taking part in the Food Festival. For some reason unknown/bad planning, all the stalls were selling food and 8 out the 10 stalls were selling cake, of which there were many free samples! So I put aside all my concerns of people touching what I was about to eat with their filthy filthy hands and embraced the free samples. Of which there were many brownies. 

And so in typical browser style we tried all the samples, didn’t buy anything and went about our business. But on the way back I couldn't resist the temptation to get something. I could hear the brownies calling my name, and it would have been rude to ignore them.


But then I faced the ultimate question – which brownie was best?!

We decided (obviously this was too important a decision to make by myself) that rather than re-try all the brownies we would just go with whatever one we remembered as being the best. Fortunately we both decided that the first stall we had gone to was the proud owner of the Rachel & Fabienne 2012 Best Brownie Award (I don’t know what we would have done if we had disagreed, probs hold a street bake-off or something – highly illegal I know but do you have a better idea?!).


So we wondered over to the first stall where all the brownies were neatly packaged in cute little cardboard boxes. To be honest the quest almost failed at this point – “brownies packaged in boxes?!” I thought, “they must be made in a factory and pumped full of more preservatives than the Duke of Edinburgh.” But I was wrong (for a change), the stall proudly held a sign proclaiming that all the ingredients were kitchen cupboard ingredients (you never know what people keep in their kitchen cupboards though).




“Prosperity Brownies”. Bit of an odd name I thought, must be some kind of play on prosperity gospel. It wasn’t until later when about to partake of said brownie that I read the cute little box and the explanation on it:


“Whilst prosperity brownies is about baking beautiful brownies, our chocolate heart is committed to the prosperity of underprivileged kids. 10% of all our peofits are donated to children’s charities, Viva and global compassion. These two wonderful organisations are dedicated to helping children at risk around the world.”

A quick read of the website reveals that Prosperity Brownies was started by a woman who had a great recipe for brownies and a desire to make a difference to others. Prosperity Brownies was born. 


Not only a great brownie but also committed to helping others! Cake with a conscience. LOVE IT!

Check www.propseritybrownies.com for more info.