Welcome to a simple getaway and retreat space in a little village called Mokatse, 30 kms away from Gaborone, the capital of Botswana. Down to earth, simple and natural, letting nature be as present as possible on the 1.4 hectares of semi arid land.
Grey louries cry 'go away', breezes gently flow past, scattering dust and leaves, barefoot steps imprint on the earth and skies of blue decorated with fluffy clouds watch from high above.
On this special piece of land, different activities are offered:
-people come for a few hours to relax and rejuvenate, to have a wholesome and satisfying vegan lunch and and to enjoy just being present;
-workshops on a variety of subjects: mainly food, health and wellness, qigong and taichi, animal wellness, and body, mind, heart, spirit oriented activities.
-gatherings to meet and mingle, learn and grow.
As I am also doing more other work that excludes the above, the upkeep of this place requires time and a few more hands, that which I do not have. The major work requested is land maintenance: cutting the grass, pruning trees, removing enthusiastic agaves that grow where they are not wanted, and so on.
Some of the other things, depending on whether I have the materials and the time to guide and help out, would be to include more shaded areas (laying simple clay brick flooring and shade netting), a few more proper swales (water catchment/guiding areas) for when the rains come so that the water goes back into land and does not erode the slights slopping earth, clearing and flattening of the dirt access road, a wood fired oven built using the clay present in the area, a small water catchment/pond/pool (hard work when the ground is dry...which is most of the year!), more permanent electrical lines for the Retreat Hall and the toilet and 'shower' area, gutters on the roof to collect rainwater, and anything else that pops up!
Being an animal lover is necessary to visit , as there are dogs and cats as well as the local wildlife such as snakes and monitor lizards. Respect is what counts, as there is a harmonious relationship between us all.
Down to earth and close to earth living is what it is all about.
About me a bit: I am Nancy, and I am kind of multiskilled! I like to live a simple and down to earth life. I love animals (that's why I don't eat them...) and art and martial arts. Integrity and virtues are important to me.
So too are sunrises and sunsets, honesty, gentle breezes, organic vegan chocolate, garlic (not in the chocolate...), nature, continuous self growth and awareness, chocolate (oh, did I already mention chocolate?).
I enjoy creating delicious simple meals, baking sourdough bread, playing with my animals, reading, living life, walking barefoot, and eating chocolate (oh, chocolate again...)
And if it is not obvious by now, I am also a chocolatière :-) and an artist of various mediums, especially watercolour and terracotta clay. I also create healthy foods and crafty products which I sell at the regular monthly markets.
Life is my palette...
DIY and building projects
Creating/ Cooking family meals
The place is in the village of Mokatse. You can visit the village and meet the local Batswana people. There are also a few other places close by that offer local experiences.
I also have an area on my plot where the children of the village come sometimes to play and learn. Currently I am not open, but I can tell the kids to come and you can have fun with them, and teach them anything you wish to share.
If you are inventive, good with your hands and with DIY, have a good work ethic, and are willing to get those hands of yours dirty, then welcome to my place. (Also good if you don't desire to hang out too much, as apart from this project, I am occupied with my other projects, so don't have a lot of time to spend with you. But I will not neglect you!)
Main things will be clearing and maintenance: tree pruning, bush clearing and some simple gardening.
And then comes the more 'serious work'... :-) as mentioned above:
shaded areas (laying simple brick flooring and shade netting),
swales for water catchment,
clearing and flattening of the dirt access road,
a wood fired oven built using the clay present in the area,
a small water catchment/pond/pool,
more permanent electrical lines for the Retreat Hall and the toilet and 'shower' area,
gutters on the roof to collect rainwater,
and anything else that pops up!
This host offers a language exchange
This host has indicated that they are interested in sharing their own language or learning a new language.
You can contact them directly for more information.
There are two standalone rooms available, next to the Hall where people come for their retreat and activities:
Both rooms have 2 beds, and some other furniture.
There is electricity in the rooms, and a tap is just outside, where the outdoor 'kitchen'/washing area is.
A pit/composting toilet is a short way outside, as is a simple washroom.
A gas geyser is available, but washing with sun heated water is preferable (especially during this season of heat), so as to save both on gas and water (do you know how much water is lost during a five minute shower???)
The water is heated in a black container during the day, and, oh my, you will have lovely hot water in a pail to delight in cleaning yourself. :-)
In the larger room there is an electrical stove/oven where you can cook for yourself. This is a shared 'kitchen'.
I am unable to provide meals everyday, although I will provide you with the produce so you can create your own meals. Please note that this is a mainly vegan space, so although I might allow eggs, cheese, etc, I would rather not. Let's keep this space as kind to all beings as possible.
So in addition to this being a vegan/vegetarian space, it is also a no smoking, no drinking, and no drugs space.
Silliness and playfulness is allowed :-)
(Accommodation might seem really simple, especially in terms of toilet and washing, but remember that most people take things for granted, so here you have an opportunity to respect the water that you use for washing, just by having to make some effort to heat it (if you need to), and by minimising the amount you use by washing from a pail. It brings you back to a pure connection to earth, and to recognizing just how special and precious water really is.)
For travel to Gaborone (30 km's away), there are local combi's, (taxi's as well, but they cost between BWP 100 and 150 to go to Gaborone), or I can give a lift when I go there twice a week.
Hitchhiking is safe (however always be aware wherever you go) and mostly quite easy.
Closest major shopping is 15 km's (15 minutes) away by car at Phakalane, and I pass there every Tuesday and Thursday.
Please do not be misguided into a 'romantic' idea of what village life is like here. Most buildings are modern, cars abound, some rubbish is strewn around, and people are just living the best they can with what money they earn. Unfortunately, some people chose to use their money at the local bar over the weekends, but is that not the case everywhere around the world?
But yes, there are a few thatched huts, with chickens pecking, goats and cows and donkeys awandering, and playing kids...:-)
There are various activities available around the area of Gaborone, but it is best to ask me what you are looking for so I can advise.
Limited internet access
We have pets
We are smokers
Can host families
This host can provide space for campervans.
I have another space close by that is fenced and separate from main plot, so if you are okay to sleep in your tent or car, then you are welcome to come with your pet. Just maybe not your elephant or kangaroo...
More than two
Maximum 4-5 hours a day, 5 days a week