BLUE & BAGLESS IN MOZAMBIQUE
I had just crossed from Malawi into Mozambique and was feeling somewhat disoriented when I attempted to change some currency with a local black-market dealer. Moments later, just aer I had placed my bag on the back of a flatbed truck that I was about to ride east for more than a hundred miles, I realized that I had been fleeced out of $20. I quickly tracked down the dealer and as we had a polite disagreement, the truck – and my bag – pulled away. I chased it, but the driver didn’t stop.
Dejected, I sat on the curb and wondered what more could go wrong. Miraculously, the truck returned 15 minutes later. It turned out the driver was just patrolling for more passengers! Elated, I hopped onto the truck’s flatbed. My relief must have been obvious to the other passengers, who, sensing my stressful day, went above and beyond to li my spirits.
As we trundled toward the coast with arms locked and legs dangling over the sides of the truck, they gave me sugarcane, along with a lesson on how to chew it, and when we stopped at a roadside stall for roasted chicken, a fellow passenger paid for my meal. From feeling exploited to feeling like part of the family – it was quite a day. Since then, the generosity and hospitality of African people has never ceased to amaze me.
“As we had a polite disagreement, the truck – and my bag – pulled away. I chased it, but the driver didn’t stop.”