Friday, April 18, 2008

Maputo - Day Two

(posting by Andy)

Today was a much better day for both of us here in Mozambique. It's funny, we have learned during this trip what our limits are when traveling. Here things are rougher than we have ever encountered nor expected so originally we were not at ease. Unlike the bush were we had to watch out for wild animals, here we need to watch out for criminals and shady cops. Different but in a sense very similar. The point is to watch your back everywhere you go and carry little to nothing of value on you.

Although we want to blame someone for the uneasyness, when people are very poor, crime is the only thing that is left for them at the end of the day. Everyone needs to eat everyday, and since we really don't know what it's like to be this poor, we just have to deal with the punches and watch our every move when out of the comfort of the hotel.

Traveling to third world countries is much different that what I have seen on t.v. Unlike Madonna or Angelina Jolie we don't have an army of gaurds that walk around with us and protect us... you don't see that on t.v. so this is something we have learned. Us bitches arn't rich enough so until we hit the lotto, I have asked Rhett to NEVER take me to a place this remote again. I am just not cut out for it.....I didn't know that before this trip. Rhett is also uneasy and agrees. Mind to all: Lonely Planet guides are really for the pretty rough traveler. We'd be surprised if Frommer's or Fodor's even MADE a guide on Mozambique...

Today was much better because we hired a private tuk-tuk. A tuk-tuk is much like a moped that can seat two people plus the driver. This nice guy was named Simbola and he showed us around town and took us to the market where today's catch of fish, fruits and vegetables, and little trinkets are sold. The experience was very good and we felt very comfortable with him as he took us around for an hour or so.

He then dropped us for an hour to have lunch at the Hotel Polana which has colonial Portuguese architecture. Very swanky and very nice. After lunch Simbola waited for us in front and took us back to our hotel which is where I type you now.

Early tomorrow we want to get a head start out so we can have daylight travel back into South Africa where we will be in Johannesburg for two days - we changed our trip to go there a day early to ease our minds and make our vacation a bit more comfortable for us. Johannesburg is the commerical capital of the African continent and the largest city in South Africa with 7 million inhabitants. A very big city - parts are very unsafe, but we will be in the old money area and have no interest in danger (been there... done that)! We are staying at the Hyatt there so for Rhett and I, it will feel more like home as they will make sure to take care of us.