In Search of Malawian Gold

May 28th, 2014 - Mulanje Area, Phalombe, Malawi

It's hard to believe it that it's finally happening. Tomorrow marks the day that our great Malawian Paragliding Expedition begins.

Godfrey, Erica an I have been doing Hike 'n Fly's at Mount Mulanje all week, testing our camping gear and connecting as a team. Come dawn, we will head out into the beautiful unknown to discover all of what this magical country has to offer the world of free flight.

This time, we will be travelling in a jeep Godfrey and his father have lovingly restored, enabling us to travel to furthest reaches and most rural parts of Malawi.

Ultimately, our goal is to find dozens of great flying spots and the perfect location for the School of Dreams, Malawi's first paragliding school and Community Development Center.


PREVIOUS DISPATCH

Growing Alone

Two years ago marked the end of an Era; a large chunk of my life I had completely dedicated to loving and prioritizing the potential of others. And while I was foolishly attached to some fairytale ending of everyone marching into the sunset, hand in hand, I was abruptly awoken from this dream upon realizing that, those I had chosen to stand by, could not stand by me.  And so for the past two years, I have committed myself to exploring the darkest corners and brightest pathways of my own being.   In other words, I was re-discovering ways in which to love myself. But in order to do that, I had to spend these years rediscovering the fabric of my own being ..stuff I could only love once I'd acknowledged it was there.  Today marks another major turning point.  With new horizons and a tank full of Love, I openly acknowledge my readiness to again invest in others, with the new understanding that, I must continue to invest in myself, in equal parts.  Thank you for engaging with my posts. Your listening allows a level of vulnerability which has highly influenced the speed of my recovery.  With gratitude,  <3 B

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NEXT DISPATCH

The First Malawian XC

I never thought it could happen to me.  [show:image:21328]As I scoured Google Maps in search of Malawi's highest peak, my objective was to train the first Malawian to paraglide, have him fly from there, and make a film about it. It was an epic 'top-to-bottom' and we all went home satisfied.  Three years later and I have returned to this magical land with a deep hunger, no longer to teach others, but to teach myself. The lesson: Fly far and high in a land no paraglider has ever explored.  After a three hour hike in, my team and I found ourself perched 500 metres above the valley floor. The thermic cycles were strong and frequent so we wasted no time. Within ten minutes of launching, I was wishing I had setup my in-flight pee tube; not because I had forgot to go earlier, but because I was so excited I could hardly contain myself.  [show:image:21330]My wildest of dreams had come true! The great Mount Mulanje, upon which I often gazed while training Godfrey years back, was allowing me to fly along its beautiful body: A medley of ancient spires, massive caves and painted cliff faces. Throughout the entire flight, I had a feeling that this rock knew something I did not, suggesting that I tread lightly for this incredible mountain commanded the respect of a dinosaur.  As the short winter's day came to a close, I landed on a dirt road to the tune of hundreds of cheering villagers. They had all whitened something they had never thought possible. So had I.  View this flight online or in Google Earth here: [url=http://www.paraglidingforum.com/leonardo/flight/922361]http://www.paraglidingforum.com/leonardo/flight/922361[/url]  [group:image:21331][group:image:21332][group:image:21336][group:image:21367][group:image:21369][group:image:21384] [group:image:21334][group:image:21318]

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The Boy Who Flies

Adventuring into the heart of Africa, a paraglider instigates a young man's potentially deadly quest to release the weight of poverty, social taboos and self doubt, and take to the skies. In doing so, the traveler is confronted with unsettling truths about his own racial and cultural identity.

In a country where no one flies, two friends can inspire a nation by putting everything on the line.

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A Canadian Dream

Fly along as Benjamin Jordan sets a new World Distance Record (10,000 km) as he crosses Canada by Powered Paraglider. Along the way, you will land at summer camps and inspire thousands of children, while raising funds to send less fortunate ones to summer camp next year! The 71 minute, Documentary Feature contains 15 chapters chronicling the epic successes and failures of this unprecedented journey. Each chapter focuses on a unique aspect of Canadian geography, culture and the exact mix of team-work and blind optimism required to pull off such a daring stunt. Since it's release in 2010, A Canadian Dream (formerly "DREAM") has screened in theatres world-wide and, through it's proceeds, has allowed almost 100 children, from low-income homes, the opportunity to attend summer camp.

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