Monday, October 16, 2006

Across the border to Mozambique: Tofo (Day 1 and 2)

After a long long long and painful drive through dirt roads, potholes and a truck battery that seemed decidedly tempremental on starting up, then not wanting to turn off, we made it to our camp site at Tofo, a beach area on the southern coast of mozambique. The border crossing looked like something out of an immigrant documentary, people in scrabby clothes hoping to be allowed into South Africa..

the place we were staying in Tofo, called the "Bamboozi Lodge" was filled with coconut trees.. the kind you imagine in the carribbean with hard coconuts that could fall down anytime, and a few scattered at your feet. We obviously didnt camp near any of the trees.. but at night a few of us felt adventurous and took turns hacking at one of the fallen coconuts with a machetti we'd borrowed from another traveller..

the milk poured out and made a mess, but that's definitely the first time I've ever seen a coconut come right from the tree and ready to eat: organic!

Since we hadn't yet seen the famous beach that was right at our doorstep, at night a few of us wandered down to take a look. Because of the full moon that was approaching, everything was lit up, and looking stunning. I managed to balance my camera on a rock to do a long exposure shot: these are the actual colours that were there, absolutely no editing!

The next morning Takalani (the driver/guide) decided to make good with the coconuts and have one for breakfast..

Apparently we're not the only ones who enjoyed them though,

We went swimming with the whale sharks that day, they're the biggest kind of shark you can find! I took a few pictures with an underwater camera, as we headed out to the deep deep ocean, and watched the dolphins swim around us. Then we put on snorkel gear when we saw a whaleshark near, and swam with it (they're vegetarian, they dont mind us). You could get pretty close to it, but i'd had enough of the choppy waves and the struggle to breathe, so after a short encounter I headed back to the boat.

After the swim a few of us wandered along the beach into the town nearbye to see what was around..

I of course had to include my shadow, who has been following most patiently through all my adventures..

The town was fairly quiet and traditional, women in bright coloured clohing carrying just about anything from coconuts to barrels on their heads

I bought a painting, with a lot of grievance as the man selling it kept changing the price to suit his convenience every minute. There were also colourful sarrongs on display in the wind:

By the time we headed back the wind had picked up and the clouds had started to roll in

The entire lodge area that we were staying in was comprised of wooden walkways with thatching on the roofs, sand, and palm trees. It made me think of some desert island like the one where robinson crusoe set up his little home, or the swiss family robinson.

The next day we left Tofo to head north to Vilanculos, though we ended up suffering a three hour delay as the truck got stuck in the sand, and only eventually made it free with a lot of pushing, and the help of an entire crew of black guys who built a makeshift wooden road for us.


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