Everyone dies. Not everyone truly lives. -William Wallace "Braveheart"

Monday, August 25, 2014

ZAMBIA

I FINALLY made it! It took 40 hours to get here, but I made it!
On my way to retrieve my luggage from baggage claim I broke my main pair of shoes. I had pretty much planned on wearing them with everything, so I'm pretty bummed. I was met by the driver who informed me that we were waiting for one more person. We waited for over an hour, but she never showed up.

At Livingstone Backpackers I am informed that I won't be able to stay at the volunteer house until I "officially" start volunteering on Monday. They place me in a 4 person bunk by myself and I get settled in.

The first thing I want to do when I arrive is hop in the shower. It's a strange setup with an open air unisex bathroom and nowhere dry to get dressed after showering. The shower is FREEZING! Painfully cold! I think about complaining, but then I feel a sudden wave of guilt. I should be happy that I have the resources to get a shower. Most people in Zambia don't have the luxury of a formal shower.  So, I grit my teeth and bare it...literally.

After thawing out from the shower, I decided to walk around and explore Livingstone. I needed to change money and grab a few things from the store. Livingstone is pretty small. Everything is in walking distance to the backpackers, which is nice. I immediately felt safe and comfortable in Zambia. The people are so warm and friendly. Some people just want to sell you things and can be a little relentless, but it is next to impossible to pick them out of the crowd because everyone treats you as if you are their new best friend. I may have felt a little too comfortable.

One night at about 10:00pm I decided to go meet up with some friends at a bar about a mile away from the backpackers. On my way out one of the guards (a local) at the gate questioned me "Amanda? (looks down at his watch with a concerned look on his face) Where do you think you are going so late? No...not a good idea." "I'll be fine," I assured him tucking my small purse into my jacket and zipping it out of sight. "See." "I don't like this," he said as he opened the gate. I still wasn't worried. It wasn't until I got to the end of the dirt road where a couple guys were sitting hanging out that I got worried...not scared of them, but because of the question they asked me. They looked at me as if I was an alien and asked "Are you okay?" "Yes?" I said unsure. I picked up the pace after that. Apparently walking around after dark isn't such a good idea haha. I made it fine though, in case you were wondering.

It was lonely the first 2 days in the room by myself. I wished that they would stick a couple of people in the room with me, but no such luck. On the third day, I met a group of five traveling from Australia. We clicked immediately. I only got to spend five days with them, but I actually got a little emotional when they left.




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