After we landed in Zimbabwe I had to go through immigration. The kids were so restless they were literally climbing up the walls. An immigration officer felt sorry for me and let me go through the diplomats line to speed up the process. Over the years I have spoken to my dad on the phone and Kupa had video chatted with him.
As we walked through the doors they saw my father and ran straight to him yelling ‘sekuru.’ What a beautiful moment that was. We had quite a few family and friends waiting for us so it was quite a beautiful sight.
We did not stick around the airport for long because we had to travel to Gokwe which would take us 6 hours considering the roads. It is amazing how children are so innocently direct. He would not stop talking and telling his grandpa a lot of stories and also reminding him how very bumpy the roads were.
So our first stop was Gokwe which is actually where both my mum and dad are originally from. We were on our way to the village my father grew up in. If you have been to or are from Zimbabwe you know that the rural roads are gravel and some may have big potholes. It took us 6hrs to get to the village but it was still an advantage. The whole time Kupa and Nashe were talking their sekuru’s ears off. We got there at midnight so it was straight to bed for everyone. Well though they have solar we have to be mindful when using lights so I had to use a lamp and I was so happy because not once did any of them ask for the light to be on and yet when we are home its, “mama please put the lights on.”
Because of the time difference the kids and I were up at 4am the next day. What was more exciting for them was hearing the roosters so early in the morning. Being winter it meant we had to stay indoors for a couple of more hours until the sun came out but as soon as day break came they were out running around. My aunts were up and starting the fire in the kitchen so they could start the day. The kids have seen me start a fire in my mother’s fireplace but that is enclosed. This fire was open and had huge logs in it. It took a while for them to get used to the smoke too haha.
You could not keep them grounded at this stage. They were rolling in the sand outside and chasing the goats and the neighbours pigs.
Another thing that fascinated them was the well. I did not let them anywhere near the well because we may have had an incident with them trying to experiment. They got to meet my aunts’ children and loved playing with them. I loved how they just felt so at home and would just run and greet people.
What was amazing to my family was how both Kupa and Nashe were greeting them in Shona without any prompting. As soon as they saw someone it was, “mangwanani aunty or sekuru” or “makadii.”
Come brunch time one of my aunts cooked us sadza with beef and kale. You wouldn’t believe what Kupa said as he was eating it. “Mama you should make delicious sadza like this.” That statement had everyone in stitches and the smile on my aunt’s face was golden. I mean i know my cooking is amazing in their books but i think a taste from another country and cook and was different and I will admit it was amazeballs.
We still had a journey ahead of us so we had to get going but considering how they had been rolling in the sand they needed a bath. Now imagine rural remote you aren’t going to have bath tubs and fixed showers. We wash using water in buckets or large dishes. The kids were bathed in a large metal dish and there was my Kupa asking, “aunty why is this bath so small?” I just loved how he was experiencing all this and still not shy to ask these questions.
They had such a wonderful time seeing the cow and donkey drawn carts as we were driving through the village on our way out.
They even got to see the cotton plantations and bales of cotton awaiting to be taken to the Cotton Marketing Board.
My babies experienced rural Zimbabwe and they loved it. Kupa even said he wanted to come back again.
More of our Zimbabwe travels to come.