This is the twenty first in an ongoing series of posts that capture journal entries from my incredible trip to Zimbabwe in 1997. You can read more about my motivation for the journey and why I’m revisiting it now in the original post. I was 21 at the time I wrote this.
8/4/97, Chitungwiza, Zimbabwe I got up around dinner time and tried to go out to the bathroom holding a candle because it was dark. It was windy though and I hardly made it out the door. This was the precise moment for which I brought a flashlight but alas it was back in Zengeza 3 where it would do me no good. I ended up carrying a box of matches out into the darkness and entering that scary, smelly concrete building without sight, hoping I wouldn’t encounter anything unpleasant or at worst, fall in! Once inside, I had to light several matches to get my pants down and position myself correctly. It was frustrating but looking back I suppose it would have been a pretty funny sight. Dinner was much the same as lunch but I had to ask for chicken because all that was on the table was goat meat and intestines. After dinner the women sat around the fire in the cooking hut and the men sat outside around the fire. Not feeling welcome at either, I did a brief stint at both and then went to bed, both fires were smoky anyway. I wanted to get up to go to church the next morning but didn’t feel like getting up. No sponge bath, it seemed too much trouble. I watched TV and ate porridge while they had their family meeting and then we went home, stopping for beer and gas on the way, we passed small monkeys on the side of the road, playing in the grass. Francis said that they were ‘clever’ and that it was bad luck to run them over.
We dropped uncle in the Harare city center to catch a lift to whatever suburb he lives in and dropped Dorothy off nearby in Zengeza 3, we were home by 5pm. The journey was much more interesting by day. The village is miles and miles out into the bush but it is still a large fairly well off area. We got gas in Umvuma where there is a big gold mine. I was glad to be home, people get on my nerves sometimes and that was a day when I wanted everyone to just shut up and leave me alone. John took me out that night but it has been a while since this happened (only just now writing it down) and I don’t remember what we did. The trip to the village was during the last weekend in July. We must have gone to see a movie or went to the Pensoua, a bar that the motorcycle boys frequent.