‘No man the boarder closes at eight’

‘No man the boarder closes at eight’

“Oh will you honestly just relax, the border closes at eight…you can trust me, I have done this a thousand times”

Famous last words as we headed to the Malawian border, my Welsh mate who had come to enjoy the African sun may have been right, my life in Africa has taught me that when it comes to hurrying and destroying road time with worries simply just does not work. However the border did not close at eight, it closed at six. With the sun setting fast and hundreds of trucks surrounding us, we had no choice but to park for the night and cross at first light. http://www.maggieinafrica.com/2016/11/border-crossing-zambia-malawi-chipata/

Two women, one more foreign than the crayfish now overpopulating Kariba dam http://theconversation.com/freshwater-crayfish-the-forgotten-invaders-wreaking-havoc-across-africa-58450 and the other perhaps to African for her own good, slightly panicked but not to phased (we’d had a good run, if this was it, this was it!) stared at each other, then at the cooler box was this really a gin and tonic moment?

Suddenly a truck driver knocked gently on my window, slightly worried I lowered it only a few inches to allow for possible conversation. After being told our current position was not safe he instructed us to park between two trucks, with no reason to worry except fear itself I did so. Two other trucks then proceeded to block us either side, there was no chance of running now. http://www.zambiatourism.com/about-zambia/people/tribes

African pride set in when our privacy and space was granted to us, so we decided had a quick wash down with wet-wipes and then pushed our chair back down and fell fast into a deep sleep. Just before I dosed I remember saying to god, thank you for these people, thank you for the road and thank you for Africa.  The morning light broke into the vehicle in floods of oranges and reds, heavy breathing had resulted in rather misty windows, and a stretch was in order. Once outside the vehicle I noticed both trucks either side of us had fallen back into formation, the truck drives waived from his coffee position under his trailer. I looked at the sky once more, before brushing my teeth and heading back onto Zambia soil.

Please remember to always be safe in Africa, the lesson, however, I took from all this was that my continent is one super special place! I am truly proud to be an African!


Claire Bradshaw


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