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Author Topic: Off to see the wizard - Mozambique , Malawi , Zambia and Zimbabwe  (Read 19034 times)

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Online dirtyXT

Re: Off to see the wizard - Mozambique , Malawi , Zambia and Zimbabwe
« Reply #60 on: October 01, 2016, 12:00:03 pm »
wow amazing story! very good of you to go visit Oscars family! he sounds like character. good on you both!
Bike history:
Ital jet 50 - sold, DT 50 - scrapped - AR80 - sold DT185 - confiscated  KDX250 - sold ZZR400 - sold KX500 - XT660R Swapped for R1 YZF R1 - sold - XT660Z - sold

 

Offline shanti

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Re: Off to see the wizard - Mozambique , Malawi , Zambia and Zimbabwe
« Reply #61 on: October 01, 2016, 12:24:00 pm »
Riding Day 23 Tete to Tara and Daves ( Namizumu Forest retreat )

Riding with no expectations and no real destination I set off from Tete - I had a vague notion to head as far as I can and try get to the Mangochi area in Malawi so I can chase the sun and reach Northern Mozambique in time for the eclipse . Had a great day with people along the way and connected with so many beings on this way east - an affirming experience in a good space , the soul of adventure riding .

Entering Malawi again and at my many Sobo stops my bike as always gathered a crowd



The Malawians even though in abject poverty are all trying to make a plan to get by - problems with your phone ?



Getting the hang of taking photos while riding occupied my time



Sadly there is not much space for the wildlife in Malawi - grinding poverty means even the smallest of birds have a space in some-ones stomach and a few kwatcha in anothers



My resolution to always carry fruit around meant I wasn't ever long without a crowd of kids sharing my nutrients



My side bags doing there thing in providing meals on wheels and provisions for me in the evenings



Getting pretty good fuel economy on the slow roads of Southern Malawi - through the dust that's 24.2km/L



Heading to a party meant looking good - now nothing like a shaved head when you don't have to do it yourself



Make me look like Bruce Willis and don't hold back on the good looks , well , he tried  :lol8:



Heading over the bridge at Mangochi towards the mountains where my GPS said there was somewhere to stay ( I was travelling with an old GPS and an old copy of Tracks For Africa 2009 , things were not as they seem as I would find out )





My love for sunset riding was getting the better of me and my dalling around was in full swing



Finally I reached an un-signposted road going straight up a mountain , my GPS had indicted that it should have been a km further back but on asking about the forest lodge I was told to head up this path



Photo's never do justice to steep hills and the going got quite complicated for me and my loaded bike



It had to happen , end of the day , tired and a very unusual angle for the bike to find itself in . This was a difficult pick up and it took pretty much all of my remaining energy to get the bike rubber side down again . I was very tired and still had a further few km's to go up this mountain



When I finally made it to the top I was met by a couple having their supper , this was not a lodge as such and was their private house which they share on invitation with writers , artists , scholars and intellectuals ..... I was broken and there was no way I was heading down that mountain ......... they both looked at me and smiled , welcome traveler , have you eaten ?  






« Last Edit: October 01, 2016, 12:29:20 pm by shanti »
 

Offline shanti

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Re: Off to see the wizard - Mozambique , Malawi , Zambia and Zimbabwe
« Reply #62 on: October 01, 2016, 12:26:36 pm »
wow amazing story! very good of you to go visit Oscars family! he sounds like character. good on you both!

Thank you - it meant the world to him and our bond has strengthened , I am just amazed how he could have extracted himself from that grinding poverty with no education and money and somehow with a farm boys outlook managed to get himself south over two borders and find his way to the garden route to look for work . I have heightened respect for the migrant workers and their courage   

Online dirtyXT

Re: Off to see the wizard - Mozambique , Malawi , Zambia and Zimbabwe
« Reply #63 on: October 01, 2016, 12:56:13 pm »
absolutley! utmost respect. glad to see someone going a little deeper into the plight of immigrants and seeing beyond the cheap labour aspect. ive always found that the people with very little will gladly share you the most or all they have with a smile... carry on!
Bike history:
Ital jet 50 - sold, DT 50 - scrapped - AR80 - sold DT185 - confiscated  KDX250 - sold ZZR400 - sold KX500 - XT660R Swapped for R1 YZF R1 - sold - XT660Z - sold

 

Offline Fudge

Re: Off to see the wizard - Mozambique , Malawi , Zambia and Zimbabwe
« Reply #64 on: October 01, 2016, 01:50:03 pm »
 :thumleft: This has so been worth the wait!

Now get on with it! Curious to meet this Wizard of yours...  :biggrin:
« Last Edit: October 01, 2016, 02:01:20 pm by Fudge »
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Offline shanti

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Re: Off to see the wizard - Mozambique , Malawi , Zambia and Zimbabwe
« Reply #65 on: October 01, 2016, 03:02:40 pm »
Namizuma Forest Lodge was an amazing experience in many ways . Dave and I immediately connected on many levels , one of the biggest being our discussions on water . Water and the energies present in water have always been a huge interest of mine and now with starting our brewery this interest has become quite important as the secret to good beer is in the water .
To find an individual up a mountain who has this kind of literature in his book collection is a very rare thing



Our conversations ranged from Wilkes , Schauberger , Steiner to Fuller - my heroes of old and sadly not pursued enough - a lesson for me to go back to school . The potential for energizing the water of our brewery is vast , I am greatly thankful to this experience in knowledge and was thankful for my universe being in sync with my needs .
"bio magnetically surcharged concentrate of qualigen as produced by planetary forms of motion . When infused with drinking water it greedily binds excessive agglomerations of oxygen and purges the body ' - I will just leave that there ...

Namizuma Forest retreat is amazing and in return for fixing Dave's bikes I got too stay there for as long as I needed



The whole place is off-grid and hhas some interesting showers hidden in the surrounding hills



I was given a little hut up on the mountain too call my own and left to my own devices



It was me and the baboons and the most incredible sunsets - a magical place and that combined with great conversation and a top class library made it very difficult to leave




A natural pool and outside bath completed the picture



Tara and Daves house - taking nothing from the world



Quite a few days later I woke up and realized I can't overstay my welcome , knowing that these good people would keep gifting me I needed to say my good-byes . The ride down the hill was easy , a good metaphor for this place , hard to reach but with huge gain to be had if you are prepared to listen - easy too leave ..
check it out on the internet - http://www.namizimu.com/





« Last Edit: October 01, 2016, 04:22:07 pm by shanti »
 

Offline shanti

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Re: Off to see the wizard - Mozambique , Malawi , Zambia and Zimbabwe
« Reply #66 on: October 01, 2016, 03:42:20 pm »
Riding Day 24 Namizimu Forest Retreat to Cuamba

Off the mountain and I headed to the Chiponde border post , its down an alley off the main street and I literally rode straight past it .
There is a bustling border town vibe here with all the usual cross border trade



It was here I encountered my second run in with officialdom . When I had gone through the border from Mozambique to Malawi on the Tete side I had thought I would only need a few days to cross Malawi and they gave me a three day TIP , getting stuck on the mountain meant I had exceeded this allotted time and it was quickly realized by a sharp official . I was taken into the border post captains office and he explained that there is a 200 000 Kwacha fine ( R 3800 ) - he typed my TIP number into the computer and there it was - expired and the fine amount . I had this kind of money available but it would have meant me heading south from this point and not going any further north . I then told him a story that I didn't realize they only gave a few days to cross Malawi and informed him that I was given a 30 day visa so just assumed the TIP was for the same period . He was quite adamant that this fine should be paid or my bike will be impounded until I can come up with the money . I asked if there was a way to reduce the fine and he subtly implied that it would be up to me - at this point under the table I was putting 4 crisp R200 notes into my passport - I handed him my passport and asked him to check my visa to confirm my 30 days - he checked my passport and handed it back - seems if I could come up with a good reason for my delay he could type that into the TIP form and I could pass on - my dented rims proved a good enough reason and I was allowed to pass through the border .. Hello Mozambique for the fourth time on my journey ..

The road to Cuamba from the border post was the worst pot hole filled , corrugated road I encountered on my journey - bone jarring , hot , dusty and filled with huge transport trucks heading into land-locked Malawi

The tar or should I say ex tar didn't last long and for the first time the little islands of tar were the obstacles that could wreck your tyres - dodging tar became the game



Children and cell phone towers on this terrible stretch of road



Mozambicans are very colourful and doing my supply shopping always proved to be a riot of colour



The road was relentless in the heat




But by sundown I was approaching Cuamba




I stayed at Hotel 2000 Vision something or the other - the bar downstairs was a hookers hang-out who were servicing the many truckers that were stopping over to give themselves time to do the Chiponde road in the day - a seedy affair and on the edge of being quite rough , fending off the prostitutes I had a very early night .














Offline shanti

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Re: Off to see the wizard - Mozambique , Malawi , Zambia and Zimbabwe
« Reply #67 on: October 01, 2016, 04:08:04 pm »
Riding Day 25 Cuamba to Nampula

Leaving at sun up I was welcomed to the start of amazing scenery - there was strange mountains in the distance and I was heading for them



The road was still an obstacle course but nothing like the day before





Some serious rocks in the road made for slow riding , I had already learnt my lesson with denting rims and didn't want to repeat any past accidents



The scenery just gets better and better




the corrugations continued ....



And then suddenly - the Chinese are coming - new new roads in the middle of nowhere - hey suddenly having that 1000cc under me meant warp speed , not a cop in sight , not a line on the road - just twist and fly



even when they tried to make an attempt to stop traffic on their new road it made no difference - bikes they can go everywhere 



the tar came to an end but if you want to enjoy the granite filled mountains of the Nampula region on a dirt road I would suggest you go there soon - the Chinese are hard at work making roads so they can extract the last of the wealth from Northern Mozambique







2M because its hot and beautiful stop



This is the most popular form of transport - the Mozambicans are very keen on their bikes and use them alot , I wonder why our poorer people have never seen the advantage of being independently mobile



along the way I entered the town of Malema - maybe there is a good home for one of our politicians




If I didn't mange to hunter/gather fresh fruit and bread I ate in the local eateries - chicken and rice can be found all over and is very cheap if the menu is not in English 



Leaving Malema and back into the granite mountains





ha ha because it just gets hotter .....



termite mounds and granite mounds





I eventually arrived in Nampula and had found a Portuguese run farm that provided accommodation and camping - pretty place and they were busy upgrading the place ..



I was a bit disturbed by the signs - oh well good thing I don't read Portuguese --- something about wearing crocs around the pool I guess





I pitched my tent and tucked in for the evening










 






Offline Leo

Re: Off to see the wizard - Mozambique , Malawi , Zambia and Zimbabwe
« Reply #68 on: October 01, 2016, 06:07:45 pm »
Love your RR.

Why did you not go to Nkata Bay?
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Offline Slim Jim

Re: Off to see the wizard - Mozambique , Malawi , Zambia and Zimbabwe
« Reply #69 on: October 02, 2016, 07:32:58 am »
 :thumleft:
 

Offline shanti

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Re: Off to see the wizard - Mozambique , Malawi , Zambia and Zimbabwe
« Reply #70 on: October 02, 2016, 08:10:04 am »
Love your RR.

Why did you not go to Nkata Bay?

After Cape Maclear and Senga Bay I wanted too find a more ' deserted ' beach especially with Helene with me . Swimming in or near the big fishing villages the water tends to be a little polluted and the locals like to stare at woman swimming . Also its difficult to go for a romantic walk without being hassled to buy art works and various versions of home grown produce - I guess we just wanted the quiet together . 

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Re: Off to see the wizard - Mozambique , Malawi , Zambia and Zimbabwe
« Reply #71 on: October 02, 2016, 08:34:25 am »
Riding Day 25 Nampula to Pembe

Nampula is a very busy town , its an industrial hub for the area and I had to brave its traffic early in the morning as the farm I had stayed at was on the Cuamba Road side of town .
Leaving Nampula the road is tar and the giant granite rock formations start to get less . The road up to Pembe is in good condition apart from a 40km stretch of potholes , it was being repaired at the time of me riding through so this will change in the next few months/years . The scenery further north is a scrub land of small trees and charcoal sellers , the big trees are gone - I assume to China , Pembe has a the conveniences of a holiday town with a few big supermarkets , restaurants and banks - its a holiday hub and caters for the big game fisherman who want to go fishing in the area - the locals speak of large Chinese factory ships with their attendant trawlers in the area so this too might be at an end .
A few photos of the ride north .... I love my bike



I tried too find the locall equivalent of the great tasting Cherry Plum Sobo from Malawi , I didn't had any luck and would have to resort too 2M for my breaks



The beginning of the bad section on the northern road



A typical small town on the northern road - unlike the south of Mozambique the police dont have radar traps but rather just stop you and check all your documents - mostly they were just wanting to look at the bike and ask how fast it can go - the speed limit of course !



I stayed at Nzuwa beach lodge as this was the meeting point for the eclipse hunters and as always a sand road at the end of thhhe day makes for an interesting end of the day ride






 
« Last Edit: October 02, 2016, 08:39:23 am by shanti »
 

Offline shanti

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Re: Off to see the wizard - Mozambique , Malawi , Zambia and Zimbabwe
« Reply #72 on: October 02, 2016, 09:17:04 am »
Riding Day 26 Pemba to Tandanhangue ( Quirimbas Archipelago ferry )

At Nzuwa Lodge I found out that the gathering was in the Quirimbas Islands as this is where the epicenter of the eclipse would be - on the island of Quirimba . I was told to avoid the coastal route due to deep sand and washed away bridges so I did the 300km or so loop up the northern road . The kind folks at Nzuwa lodge agreed to look after a lot oof my kit and with a stripped down beach camping bag ( goggles , snorkel , tent , kikoi and minimal clothhing ) , whiskey , a huge bag of oranges , some basic food and 12 litres of water I headed north .

The northern road was initially good with tree lined roads



Then the devastation .......... this whole region is being cut down for the Chinese woood demands , that that is left is cut down and made into charcoal - its a heart breaking sight to see and there is smoke rising from the bush everywhere from the charcoal pits



The road became dirt and the enjoyment of the ride increased









I reached Quissanga with good time , my window of the tide was getting shorter and I didn't hang around and headed the sandy stretch for Tandanhangue



The road winds between houses and small villages



Over the salt flats



Until it reaches Tandanhangue which is just a tree and a place to leave your transportation to catch the ferry which operates on a very small tidal window



I left my bike under a tree and headed out to the islands









 

Offline slicknick

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Re: Off to see the wizard - Mozambique , Malawi , Zambia and Zimbabwe
« Reply #73 on: October 02, 2016, 09:42:05 am »
awesome stuff :thumleft:
The path of the righteous man is beset on all sides by the inequities of the selfish and the tyranny of evil men. Blessed is he who, in the name of charity and good will, shepherds the weak through the valley of darkness, for he is truly his brother's keeper and the finder of lost children. And I will strike down upon thee with great vengeance and furious anger those who attempt to poison and destroy my brothers. And you will know my name is the Lord when I lay my vengeance upon thee
 

Offline Morne 1200gs

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Re: Off to see the wizard - Mozambique , Malawi , Zambia and Zimbabwe
« Reply #74 on: October 02, 2016, 10:19:10 am »
Very good indeed  :thumleft: :sip:
 

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Re: Off to see the wizard - Mozambique , Malawi , Zambia and Zimbabwe
« Reply #75 on: October 02, 2016, 10:33:00 am »


Words dont do this part any justice - As the moon and the sun prepared to align, 30 people from 17 countries were gathering on a small island to witness the spectacular show. Its a remote place, everyone made a huge effort and travelled a long way to get there. Old and new friends worked hard to build the most efficient, comfortable and funky camp ever. We then sat back and watched the sky - the Moon cruising in front of the Sun. We had an absolute, unforgettable blast.
The energy was so high, it was unreal, it was magic.
Everything that is an escalation of awesomeness for the brave and wild hearts who decided to keep roaming Africa in a very unique way .

The following images have been taken by a very creative crew of people amongst them - Alice Bensi - https://www.facebook.com/AliceBensiThroughTheLookingGlass/ , Julian Graham - https://www.facebook.com/Aumega.photography/ , Jules and Myrtle

The reason -



The Place - far away on an island in the sun



The scenery -

















The food -













some of the people -































Yours truely :)



The eclipse -





























eclipse shadows -





Some fun around the islands







The wizard - hats off to this kind , loving , powerful , peaceful , gentle soul - Reza from Malawi for organizing this journey ..



and after a plenty few daze it was time to leave - my heart is happy that there are such beautiful people in this world keeping freedom alive living with a huge generosity and bigger smile
















Offline Fudge

Re: Off to see the wizard - Mozambique , Malawi , Zambia and Zimbabwe
« Reply #76 on: October 02, 2016, 11:02:32 am »
 :notworthy: "The feeling of awed wonder"
« Last Edit: October 02, 2016, 11:09:34 am by Fudge »
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Offline Goingnowherekwickly

Re: Off to see the wizard - Mozambique , Malawi , Zambia and Zimbabwe
« Reply #77 on: October 02, 2016, 10:40:38 pm »
My word!!!
You have just lived my biking dream, so lekker to see like minded people, enjoying what we do..
I travelled some of these spots in 2009, brings memories fr
eshly up again..
well done, you have taken this journey with the right spirit, & been justly rewarded!
 

Offline shanti

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Re: Off to see the wizard - Mozambique , Malawi , Zambia and Zimbabwe
« Reply #78 on: October 03, 2016, 10:01:13 am »
Riding Day 27 Tandanhangue to Pembe - the short route

Leaving the islands is quite difficult with the short windows that the ferry's operate in - the area is hugely affected by the tides . I had to catch a 4am ferry and the only one I could find was to Quissanga . At Quissanga I managed to find a small motorbike taxi to take me to my bike . My fuel was a little low and I couldn't find any container fuel this early in the morning so I elected to take the 4x4 route back to Pembe . This would cut my journey down by a third and I could make it back with my fuel .

After all the warnings not to take this road it proved easy and is do-able on any bike with no worries





approaching Pembe



I decided to stay at Russels Place in Pembe and enjoyed a good evening at their bar with good company






Offline shanti

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Re: Off to see the wizard - Mozambique , Malawi , Zambia and Zimbabwe
« Reply #79 on: October 03, 2016, 10:25:58 am »
Riding Day 28 Pembe to Ilha de Mocambique

I don't like turning around on bike journeys and now I found myself at the end of Mozambique with a long ride home . Its a difficult space for me and one where I had to work very hard to not make my return the destination and singular objective . I decided to head for Ilha de Mocambique - a world heritage site off the coast of Mozambique .



Aside from the potholes that I had previously encountered the journey was uneventful and I was much in my head most of the time to properly take in the sights ..



washing day at the many rivers on the ride south



Ilha is reached by a 4km causeway with small double sections too allow cars to pass coming in and going out .



Its an amazing place that has been left behind by time and a perfect break on the north south road of Mozambique







I spent my time walking the old streets and drinking very good coffee at the various foreign run eateries in town . My bike was secure in the foyer of the place I was staying at it was good to be on foot .



With the un-official war happening further south it was strange to see Renamo buildings