I AM BACK...it was such a good trip. The first week I was a typical tourist; the second I was immersed in a traditional Zambian family (well traditional may be a loose term). But anyways, while I was there I was able to check three things off my goals in life...1) see Victoria Falls (one of the natural seven wonders of the world), 2) go on an African safari, and 3) eat a messy meals with my hands. This adventure was unreal. We tracked a lion in the bush. We followed him for about a half an hour and were about 10 feet away from him. We saw hippos, hyenas, zebras, elephants, giraffes, lionesses, antelope, baboons, crocodiles, and so much more. I loved that we got to camp. Being able to just sit and listen to all the noises that were taking place in the jungle was something I will never forget.
This experience was at times definitely out of my comfort zone. Throughout my time there the Zambians kept asking me what was the difference between Germany and Zambia...WOO, where do I begin. How can you compare such different places. Germany is an orderly, rule driven society; one the other hand Zambia has a free spirit about it. Yes, there is poverty, but the people are very friendly and share the little they have.
I think I talked more politics on this trip than every before in my entire life. We discussed everything and anything that dealt with refugees, the wars taking place in Africa, the relief efforts from the other nations, what it will take to free Africa from this cycle of impoverished natives, the elections, the lack of drive of the Zambian people have to reduce their 80% unemployment due to the foreign aid they constantly receive. I read articles, books, talked to passionate workers, Zambians...I think my head grew a few inches because of all the knowledge I obtained.
I had many men propose to me. Some man told me he would die for me...that is something I had never heard before, but he was at the top of my list after that statement. One man told Chris he wanted "to use me". Dirty man. Whites in their culture are held with high regard. We are walking money symbols...even if we are poor missionaries.
All in all, it was so fun getting to see how Chris lived. I respect him so much for being able to endure living the way he does. The house was crawling with insects...I got bed bugs...I beheaded a chicken...I bathed in a bucket...but Chris has been able to live in this, while remaining sane. I do not believe I could handle that with as much poise as he has. But the thing that is shocking is that people live in that environment their entire lives and know nothing else.
Well, this sounds like a pity party...but it was truly an experience and I will go back to Africa someday...there are a lot more adventures to be had and a lot more people to encounter...