When I visited Zimbabwe after meeting my Wife I stayed on my Mother-in-Law’s farm. Each day I found myself involved in the day-to-day activities of the farm and got to know several of the workers personally. The initial barriers of being the Son-in-Law were broken down by my willingness to get involved in the activities that the workers were required to do. It gave me an understanding of the difference between their lives and my own – between semi-mechanised arable farming and getting hi-tech telecomms services delivered to major businesses, between living in a suburban street and living in a circular mud hut. Their life was so much physically harder than mine but I suspect that mine was significantly more stressful with responsibilities that they did not have. The hardest thing I had to overcome was getting them to understand, “I’m not Boss… I’m Martin”
Sadly, AIDS is rife in southern Africa and I know that several of the people in these images have passed on in the years since they were taken.
You can read about the Weekly Photo Challenge at http://dailypost.wordpress.com/dp_photo_challenge/humanity/