Pela primeira vez…oh, excuse me; let me start again. The first time I visited our beautiful Portuguese neighbours was back in ’09. It was with my two best friends at the end of our final year exams. We were not the wild types so it was more of going to let our hair, excuse me, braids down. The three decades war that ended in the early 90s might have destroyed most of the infrastructure in Maputo, but the natural beauty of the landscape and beaches is still intact.
We met a wonder cab driver named Rufus upon arrival and he took us everywhere, including his home, where we met his mother and sister. We later went out partying with his sister. I think this is where I first fell in love with prawns, and I mean king prawns. The first night we ran a tab of over a 1000 from prawns, at the time we just looked at each other because we were thinking if that was in Rands we were screwed; that would have been about a quarter of our entire trip’s spending budget combined. We were students! Thank God, it was in Meticais, Mozambique’s currency which at a time was a quarter of the Rand. Phew!
Most days we spent on the beach, drinking coconut milk from coconuts, eating prawns, sightseeing, even crashed a wedding. The nightlife was completely foreign to us but they had cool bars and clubs. They love jazz and disco. They latin dance in their clubs. On our last night I ended up on a close body Samba with a local man, and by close I mean I could feel the sweat on his cheeks against mine. He had me tightly locked in his arms, wiggling didn’t help, I was saved by the DJ when the song ended. It was cool though to put my latin dance training to good use.
Plans are to do a solo travel on the East coast from Durban to Maputo via Swaziland this December. Holding thumbs that my plans succeed. Looking forward to the coconuts and the friendliest and most humble nation in the South by far.