Paddy’s last 24 hours as a Bailey – Homeward Bound
As I write this we are in Fisherman’s Rest and everyone is in good spirits - absolutely nothing to do with the beers that we had over lunch today. The highlight of today was the safari at Majete Wildlife Park. We got to see some really cool sights including Impala, Elephants, Hippos, Water Bucks, Guinea Fowl and perhaps most interestingly Paddy’s hair.
At one point I couldn’t tell the difference between Paddy and Emily from the back of their heads. It transpired that Paddy hasn’t washed his locks all week but if that’s not worrying enough he’s also only worn 3 pairs of underwear since arriving in Malawi. I’m not sure if he’s been put off by Mark lunging around in various states of undress or if he’s planning on testing Cindy’s cleaning abilities on Saturday afternoon. It turns out that Cindy did have an intervention of sorts in Warwick a few weeks ago due to the limited number of underpants emerging from Paddy’s room but it turns out that he’s only got 3 pairs!!! He’s resorted to wearing Dan’s and at the time of writing it’s still unclear whether this is before or after Dan has worn them first. When we were in Heathrow last week I asked him whether he had a girlfriend in University, the answer was a no and things are starting to make perfect sense. When quizzed about whether he has a clean pair for travelling home in he looked to Dan inquiringly who gave him the universal expression for ‘sorry but you are screwed mate’.
This afternoon was a lovely treat post the safari with us going to the ‘Crococabana’ where they had more alcoholic beverages, a swimming pool and lovely food. Having spent the last 8 or 9 days brushing our teeth in a pit, squatting over a hole in the ground and sleeping at a snoring convention this was most welcome. Things were going really until Mark treated us all to a swim in his elasticated tighty whities. It also didn’t help that he kept hopping out of the pool to get the rugby ball and removing what little slack the budgie smugglers had from the crack of his rear end.
It was a surreal experience leaving the camp this morning and feels like the week absolutely flew. Whilst we didn’t get to finish the feeding centre build due to the funeral in the village we should be proud of what we achieved i.e. painting the secondary school, spending time in the feeding centres, training the teachers, laying bricks and most importantly introducing the kids to “Can I get a whoop whoop? What a legacy to leave…..
For those of you thinking ‘wow Jed smells good today’ then you would be correct. He smells of 7,940 odd types of mint. The reason for this is that he decided to lather himself from head to toe in my shower gel this morning. We all know what he was thinking “that shower gel really tingles – good that”. What Jed hadn’t anticipated was the water running out. Now he’s a resourceful sort of guy and immediately switched tack to using the bathroom tap to cleanse himself. The German ladies staying elsewhere in camp were treated to Jed cupping water on his nether regions as they walked past our window on their morning trek.
For those of us returning this year I think that Malawi is firmly in our hearts forever, I don’t think I’ve ever felt anything less than 100% safe here and the people’s attitude and kindness is deeply infectious. For those that joined this year Paddy, Jake and Nigel I hope that you feel the same way would like to return in the future to carry on the great work you did this year. It may be the poorest country on earth but it exceptionally wealthy in so many intangible ways. Until next time….
The anti-Robin Hood Award
This goes to Jed who due to communication issues had to ask for his trowels back from Joseph after he mistakenly thought they had been gifted to him. As Paddy eloquently put it “he was literally robbing from poor people”. Jed did return them to the builders before we left.
The Paul Thomas Award for Getting Kicked in the Knackers
This award goes to Edith the nurse who left with her tail between her legs after Rob pulled her up on her length of service to the local community.
The Ryan Bailey Award for Creating Entertainment from Nowt
And the winners are Rachel Aucott and Cindy for their work in the feeding centres with all of the children.
The Stilton Cheese Award
This goes to t’Northern lads Nigel and Mark. Ye are welcome to your straight bananas.
The Mark Forsyth Award for Ludicrous Underwear
This award goes to Mark Forsyth for obvious reasons. A notable mention to Dan whose new denim shorts are bordering on unacceptable.
The Dan Bailey Award for Being a Lothario in Malawi
Honest, this was an easy decision and goes to Jed for his fleeting romance with the schoolteacher. I can’t wait until he turns on his WhatsApp back in London. (Jackie you have absolutely nothing to worry about).
The Chuckle Brothers Award for Getting Stuck in on Site
The winner is Rachel B for mixing matope whilst the local builders watched her chuckling like she’d lost her marbles.
The Jessica Harrison Award for Wanting Home Comforts
The clear winner was Jake who was pining for his hairdryer for the quiff. A notable mention to Paddy and a hair straightener. I’m not sure he actually wanted one but he’s in dire need.
The William Award for Absolutely Stacking It
This goes to that Scottish lad that had a crossbar fall on his head.
Songs for the Squad:
Birch Tree - Foals
Why’d You Only Call Me – Arctic Monkeys
What you Know – Two Door Cinema Club
Help Me Lose My Mind (feat. London Grammar) – Disclosure
This Charming Man – The Smiths
Thomas the Tank Engine theme tune