Skip to main content
Science › Biomedical Physiology + Kinesiology
SFU Co-op Student

Giraffe's in the Kalahari Desert
So again, I ask myself why I decided to visit the Kalahari desert in the middle of summer?

I had this rather horrifying experience on the weekend. It started out simple enough, lying on my couch mid-day reading. At some point, I couldn't tell you when, I just sort of passed out. There was no sleep deprivation or drinking of any sort happening, it was the strangest thing, I was there, but not really there at all...when I opened my eyes, I was still lying in the exact same spot (profusely sweating), but felt like I was physically unable to move.

Re-reading this last paragraph, it sounds like I was fed some sort of date rape drug, but the truth of the matter was that it was so hot in my house, that it actually caused me to lose consciousness. It was the strangest thing I have ever experienced; it was like being caught in a state somewhere between consciousness and unconsciousness. I wanted to move, but just couldn't. My roommate described the exact same experience, so we checked the was 47 degrees Celsius in our house, and it had already begun to cool off. So I am guessing it was well over fifty during the hottest point of the day...isn't that crazy!!! So again, I ask myself why I decided to visit the Kalahari desert in the middle of summer?

Here is Gabs, a cold shower is not the punishment you get for being the last one to get to the shower, and it is the best part of your day. It is about the only 2 minutes of your day that you don't sweat profusely! At least the Matswana (a singular version of Batswana) are finding it a little warm also, so I don't feel like such a wimp. Dad, I think this is the one time in my life I won't argue with you about turning up the thermostat!!

Other craziness that has filled the past few weeks...

  1. I rolled my ankle... which made me realize how much I love walking (even though it is always sweltering hot). It's not too bad, but it sure slowed me down a lot.
  2. I had my wallet stolen...somehow travelling to a foreign country just isn't travelling if you aren't pick-pocketed at least once...let's hope it's only once. On the plus side, none of my ID or anything was in my wallet, so I only lost cash...could have been worse
  3. I attended a local cultural event. It was really interesting to learn more about Tswana culture. I got to sample some traditional food. Pap (cooked maize flour), beans, chicken feet, cooked caterpillars (otherwise known as Kalahari prawns), and cow intestine...thank goodness I'm a vegetarian.

young child smiling

Beyond the Blog

SFU Co-op Student
SFU Kinesiology student Kayla Donnawell volunteered with the Students Without Borders program (SWB) in Botswana, Africa.
visibility  83
Mar 8, 2011

You Might Like These... Volunteering, Equity, Diversity + Inclusion, Community Engagement

Children playing hopscotch
An SFU student perspective on the Big Sisters Study Buddy program

You may have heard of them–you may even have an idea of what they do. But have you ever thought of being one? Big Sisters of BC Lower Mainland has been serving girls in one-to-one mentoring relationships since 1960, with the mission of “enhancing the confidence, self-esteem and well-being of girls through supportive friendships with caring women”. Each Big and Little Sister match gets together once a week for at least one year. 

STC West Coast
Alumnus Profile: How Crystal Kwon Advanced Her Career Through Volunteerism

Students often overlook one important benefit of volunteerism. While students realize that scholarships and bursaries usually require community engagement, they often forget that volunteerism can also give you the edge you need after you finish your degree.

Kyle and volunteers
Kyle Jung: Expand Your Horizons through Volunteering

Did you know that you can make a difference through volunteering, as well as discovering your passions and career goals? These are just some of the benefits of volunteering, according to Kyle Jung, a 5th-year SIAT student who is also the Vice President of Operations, Interactive Arts & Technology Student Union (IATSU) and the SFSS Forum Representative.

You Might Like These... Co-op Reflections

Kali surrounded by women
Getting Comfortable in Kolkata

In the third entry of her series, Kali is getting comfortable with the daily routines of living and working in Kolkata, India. Through her research into adolescent health, she developed and delivered workshops for young women on nutrition and exercise.

Image of Josh in the office with VANOC mascot stuffies
Josh Pablo, Results System Tester for VANOC

Classroom, volunteer and Co-op experience led SFU Alumus Josh Pablo to an exciting and challenging position with VANOC, preparing for the 2010 Olympic Games. Read on for more about Josh’s road to 2010 and for more on volunteering for VANOC.

A photo of a road
Interview with Naomi Devine’s Ride2Rio

Have you ever traveled 11 200 km? Perhaps you have. But, have you ever traveled 11 200 km… on a bike? That is what local woman, Naomi Devine, has been training towards since the idea first came to her last December.