Sunday, July 5, 2009

Day 29; from Tanzania to Swaziland, Africa

I was extremely worried since I was unable to contact the guys....but I have now discovered that they did not climb Mount Kilimanjaro at all, because Ramzi claims to suffer from altitude sickness!!! We believe you Ramzi, you lazy bum!
So where are they??
Once we parted company in Tanzania, they went straight to a travel agent in Dar es Salaam,

and arranged a trip for celebrate Amit's birthday today;-)...that was really sweet of them.
They took a speedboat to Zanzibar where they relaxed on a beach for the past two days...

This morning they took the speedboat to Mombasa, Kenya

where they boarded a plane for Mozambique.

Maputo, formerly Lourenço Marques/Lourenzo Marques, is the capital and largest city of Mozambique, and is a melting pot of several cultures, with a strong South African influence. The Bantu and Portuguese cultures dominate, but the influence of Arab, Indian, and Chinese cultures is also felt.
The cuisine is diverse,owing especially to the Portuguese and Muslim heritage, and seafood is also quite abundant.
Ramzi and Feroz savoured the succulent peri-peri prawn feast for brunch, but Amit is a vegetarian:-(
They then decided to feed and entertain Amit, so they flew to the Kingdom of Swaziland (Umbuso weSwatini),a landlocked country in Southern Africa, bordered to the north, south, and west by South Africa, and to the east by Mozambique.

King Mswati III of Swaziland is the king of Swaziland, and head of the Swazi Royal Family. He is one of many sons of King Sobhuza II (who had 70 wives and at the time of his death left over 1000 grandchildren). The King currently has fourteen wives and 23 children.
No, the guys did not want to meet him, they are here to see the Umhlanga Reed Dance, a traditional dance and ceremony where up to 100 000 Swazi maidens gather and dance for the Queen Mother.

This is a demonstration of tribute to the Royal Family that goes back centuries in time.
Thousands upon thousands of maidens dress up in brightly coloured attire and sing, dance together as they deliver the reed or umlanga to the Royal Residence.Their enjo
yment of this ceremony is quite apparent as they use the opportunity of bonding with girls of similar ages from across the country.
As the maidens dance, warriors and other spectators often join the dance kugiya or throw money at their feet in appreciation of their skill.
The King sometimes makes use of the occasion to publically court a prospective fiancee or Liphovela. This young woman will be given a dominant position amongst the dancing princesses.

But, oops.....the Reed Dance only takes place between 28/08/2009 - 31/08/2009 so all they saw was a few Swazi Warriors.

The warriors dress in gaily patterned cloths (emahiya) with loinskins and anklets, decorated with feathers and beads, carrying a knobkerrie and a traditional shield for defence purposes.
By now Amit was starving and sat down to a feast of traditional Swazi Food:

sishwala: thick porridge normally served with meat or vegetables
incwancwa: sour porridge made of fermented cornmeal
sitfubi: fresh milk cooked and mixed with cornmeal
siphuphe setindlubu: thick porridge made of mashed groundnuts
emasi etinkhobe temmbila: ground corn mixed with sour milk
emasi emabele: ground sorghum mixed with sour milk
sidvudvu: porridge made of pumpkin mixed with cornmeal
umncweba: dried uncooked meat (biltong)
umkhunsu: cooked and dried meat
siphuphe semabhontjisi: thick porridge made of mashed beans
tinkhobe: boiled whole maize
umbidvo wetintsanga: cooked pumpkin tops (leaves) mixed with groundnuts
tjwala (umcombotsi): traditional beer
next stop??

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