Get a view of my experiences, thoughts and opinions.
Unfortunately it's better to drive at night. The ups is that you won't find so many road blocks and those that is there aren't as interested in bribes as the other during the day. Border crossings may still be very busy. Try to avoid traveling over weekends or holidays from every country visited. They have full buses that need the same documents as you.
TIP (Temporary Import Permit), Insurance, Stamped Passport
These are the 3 most important documents you absolutely must have. Do not listen to anyone telling you that you don't. I made the mistake of entering Mozambique after an official told me that my South African insurance documentation is sufficient. I ended up sitting at a road block for 6 hours since I didn't have the adequate funds to bribe them.
A Carnet is good if you plan on staying in one country for longer than a month. Otherwise a new TIP needs to be bought every month. Up to Malawi a Carnet is a waste but further North it's highly recommended to get it. You have to have their 3rd party insurance and letters from your financial institution if the vehicle is leased.
Do not bargain on information on website like AA concerning this. It seems that the required signage changes in each country on a daily basis. After traveling through Africa your vehicle will look like a Christmas tree.
The correct information can be obtained from the runners* which is very eager to let you know since they will apply it to your vehicle for a price. You will be safe taking both a roll of white and red reflective tape. The last time I drove through I had to have two white reflective markers at the corners in front and red in the rear. Since I came with a single cab pick-up, I also needed a long piece of red reflective tape on the back. Any commercial vehicle needs it and if you drive anything that might be remotely described as one, then stick it on. They will find the smallest thing to obtain bribes.
At the Blocks
Always remember that TICA (This Is Corrupt Africa) and it's not your Africa, it's theirs. Treat it like you're a stupid but knowledgeable little tourist and you'll be fine. When stopped, friendly greet and say you're fantastic when asked. Don't hesitate to wait for them asking a certain document. Keep your documents in a separate bag/folder and give them your Passport, TIP, and insurance when they get to the window. I've found that this almost set them back as if you know the drill and cant be manipulated.
Its a total different place than I visited quite a few years ago. Back then it was a dirt poor ghost town with people screaming for clothes or food. The majority might still look like that but not the areas I went through. I visited a pool joint and ended up at a pool tournament. There's lots to do and see, unfortunately I spent most of the time in cities.
The people are quite friendly.
Roads are good.
I did get a fine for speeding, other than that it was clear with no bribes involved.
My experience in this country was tainted because of the bribing factor. For me it was just not worth it because of the corruption. If you plan on getting through all that to a certain destination and stay there for a while its probably nicer. I found that Mozambique requires the most patience of all African countries. There's an attitude amongst the people, especially authority, that displays animosity which tries its best to provoke with things like "hey you white", into deriving at a result of imprisonment or a fat bribe to avoid it. After a few trips through this country I decided to take other routes.
The big river.
I wasted time on this
Some of the kids from the village is sitting next, almost on top of me to experience the phenomena of the laptop that can play music. Even this is an experience for me. What these people don’t realise is that I am just as surprised and intrigued about their amazement of what I do every minute and things I use. In turn I am amazed how simple they live and the quality of life I see here.
I never thought things like this is true or still practiced today. The elders have unfathomable knowledge about nature. From a headache to a bad cut, infection to bronchitis, all of it gets remedied by plants, roots, and herbs that’s found in the forest. The chief of the area which I’m in have never been to a doctor and he is 64 years old.
Yesterday at the funeral I was told to look at the houses and see that none have windows. He then asked if I know why and I replied because of the heat. He proceeded to tell me that its because of poverty. I replied with “OK”. I then realized that all of humanity will never be satisfied with what they have or possess. The concept is the same about beauty. This country is very beautiful and they don’t see it and never have. I stand in awe about the beauty just as they will when they go to Sandton. These people are wealthier than any person I have ever met and they don’t know it, just as a person living in the concrete jungle doesn’t realise how poor they really are.
Burning of land for rain season
One of the agriculture things they do is to burn a piece of land next to crops they plant. That serves to when the first rains will be coming. When the first grass appear after it’s have been burned down it means the rain is on its way. Depending on the crop they either plant then or prepare the land in a different way.
Here’s about 3 spoons, 2 long wooden for stirring and one normal tablespoon. That is used to prepare the food and that’s it. They each everything with their hands. First two bowls gets passed around to wash your hands, thereafter you eat.
Men and Woman
Woman do everything around the house except killing animals like the goats and chicken. They cook, wash dishes, wash clothes, look after children, fetch water every day, and see to it that there’s food provided promptly. They then dish the food for the men who have been sitting in the “phala” and discuss decisions, land, money etc. After dishing for the men they then need to take their food and leave for a place where they cannot be seen to eat. The men hardly have any conversation with the woman except giving them orders.
Fruit and Veg
Prices of everyday things and luxuries
Waste or garbage
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