THE CALENDAR LAKE PROJECT

Define “Expedition”

What is your definition of the word “expedition?” For me, it’s packing a variety of clothes and equipment that suit different physical and professional activities, it’s a life-changing experience, a challenge and mental reboot.

This is exactly what the Calendar Lake Project was like. We boarded our house-style pontoon boat “Tafika” on Sunday 14th April, 5 strangers, 2 boomboxes and a very still Lake Malawi. The purpose of this expedition was to promote Malawi as a tourist destination, and to be the first people in history to ever circumnavigate Lake Malawi. We filmed the trip and will be releasing a documentary on the Calendar Lake Project soon.

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The "Tafika", meaning "we have arrived". Some nights were spent aboard the boat by the crew of six

From its overview, one would think that the project was an easy-going adventure and fun twenty-four hours of the day, but it was much more than that. It was quite a physically & mentally demanding expedition, the teamwork on and off the boat is what kept her afloat all it’s 52 days. For one, I have no media or broadcasting background: planning a shoot from deciding on the subject to contacting the appropriate participants and then speaking confidently on camera, was all new to me. Luckily I had a supportive team to work with, who encouraged new ideas. Some nights we slept on the boat under a the stars. When the weather became windy, we watched our trusty boat whip in the wind, righting itself even as the waves crashed against it. Most days, things were calm.

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The crew catch up with the creative director for the project. 

Discover Malawi

It is on this project that I sharpened my knowledge about Lake Malawi, it’s actual history and all the people that surround this freshwater lake. We sat down with chiefs and learnt all about Malawian cultures, the first settlers alongside the lake, their beliefs, traditions and practices.

It was also a chance to work with different people, so this definitely added a lot of value in shaping my mindset towards life. On the boat was a team of six, two captains, two filmmakers and two female presenters. Getting into a different routine for a long period of time helped me improve my daily life as soon as I returned home. I am grateful for the experience.

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My co-host Diana conducting and interview

History in the Making

I would definitely encourage anybody that has been wanting to join an expedition but has been holding back because of fear, to go ahead and take the risk. I think the good definitely outweighs the bad and you will feel absolutely satisfied at the end of it. We learned a lot about the country and ourselves, pushing our boundaries.

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