The Virgin Land

I realized I never put up pictures from Mozambique. What a beautiful, heartbreaking country Mozambique is. It’s untouched – unspoiled by the hands of capitalism and greed and free trade. It’s still pristine. The beaches are still white and unpolluted. The amazing people I met while I was there – we had so many conversations about how we were truly getting an experience of a lifetime. We were staying in true-to-God bungalows, on the beach. They were on the sand. We fell asleep to the sound of the rolling waves. We paid backing prices for our bungalows… and we all waxed nostalgia before we even left. We reminisced while we were there for the time we were having – making jokes, in complete seriousness, that in 10 years, 15 – perhaps not even as many, the beaches we were on, the bungalows we stayed in – would be turned into million dollar resorts for western tourists, for wealthy entrepreneurs and capitalists. People should see it, experience Mozambiqe – but on their own… down the pot-holed filled roads (perhaps those could be cleaned up for safety’s safe)… they shouldn’t be able to fly right in to Inhambane, to Tofo (where we were). They should fly into Maputu (the capital)… take those big, rickety, terrifying buses that are so jam-packed with people and luggage that you wonder when youll be able to really breathe again. They should experience that because that’s… that’s what it’s like there. It’s not primitive or uncivilized. It’s fresh and real and so un-built up that you can see the land, for what it is.

I’ll get off my soapbox.

The country is gorgeous but far from what I expected. It’s so green, almost like being in a forest, a rainforest perhaps… but it’s flatter than that. Not as many trees. It’s lush everywhere. And you think, constantly, that you’re right near the ocean, that you’re just about to see it – and then… it’s forever and ever away. And that’s okay. You see straw huts on the sides of the road – in the distance. Men and women, alike, out in the fields… working and planting and building and living. You see clotheslines and women carrying fresh produce on their heads. You see children running and playing and children helping their parents in the fields. You see people with stands on the side of the road – selling anything, everything, mostly fresh fruits and vegetables.

And then, without even realizing it, you suddenly hit coast, and it’s breathtaking. They (whoever “they” really is haha) say Mozambique has some of the best beaches in the world, and they’re right. They’re pristine, they’re perfect. They’re natural and real. And you see how people live with them, near them, how people and nature interact to form this beautiful, natural coalition of sorts.

It was an amazing few days I spent in Mozambique. And, you know, the more I write this the more I kind of think that maybe I DID already write a Mozambique post… haha if I did, I’m sorry you’re reading this for a second time, AND we’re seeing that forgetfulness is setting it at a shockingly early age for me 🙂

Well, in case I didn’t say this all before: I learned so much while I was there. I went from a traveler, from a student spending time abroad to a backpacker. I did it on my own, but then – I really learned that when you’re backpacking, you’re never really alone. Backpackers are an amazing group of people. Everyone’s ready to meet their newest group of friends at their newest location. And, like I was told all week while I was there, “Backpackers always see each other again.” I hope I do. Their stories and their lives and their experiences will stay with me, and now I have this burning flame within me to see and do adn experience the rest of the world and keep meeting other people with that same desire.


Published in: on July 13, 2008 at 6:17 am  Comments (1)  

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One CommentLeave a comment

  1. What an AWESOME place! It looks absolutely beautiful!

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