Traverse 06 - Page 21

(or at least the vast majority) obeys the law. A very good example of that is the fact that all motorcyclists in Rwanda wear helmets and only take one passenger, while in neighboring countries, the sight of a tiny Chinese 250cc motorcycle, its rider sitting on the tank, to fit a family of six or a full sized sofa, together with a couple of live goats on the back does not sur- prise anyone, let alone the absence of helmets. After being spoiled by not having a dull moment of riding in Rwanda, where all the distances were pleasant- ly short and the roads were perfectly curvy, we felt like Tanzania is a bit too big, a bit too flat and a bit too hot. We stopped for a few relaxing days on the coast of Lake Victoria in a city called Mwanza. Then we had a long ride towards the very touristy north- ern part of the country, which is home to many iconic African animals roam- ing the vast grasslands of the Seren- geti and many other national parks, which are visited daily by tens (if not hundreds) of thousands of tourists from all over the world. After waving to the highest moun- tain in Africa – Mt. Kilimanjaro as it peeked at us during a moment when the thick cover of clouds cleared up before the sunset and chasing four cheery wild zebras off the road near lake Manyara, we turned back south to cross this vast country and arrive at the border with Malawi; a country which is famous for its lake which is home to the popular colorful fish spe- cies - the cichlids – kept by aquarium enthusiasts all over the world. The white sandy beaches of Lake Malawi host not only locals going about their everyday errands of fishing, bathing, laundry, but aslo numerous groups of tourists from everywhere you can imagine, sun tanning, snorkeling, diving or like we did – riding into the crystal clear wa- TRAVERSE 21 ters of the third largest African lake on horseback. No, not an iron horse, but a real one, with two ears, four legs and one horse power. That was a good way to refresh, as the temperatures in Malawi were torturous – no wonder this country is nicknamed The Warm Heart of Africa. We’re guessing that the warmth not only means the blaz- ing sun everyday and temperatures above 35 degrees, but also symbolizes the amazingly friendly and cheerful locals. While riding in Malawi, as nowhere before, have we seen so many kids and adults waving so enthusiastically at us and smiling brightly when we would ride past them. Finally, after 7 great days in Malawi, we crossed yet another relaxed bor- der into Zambia. We headed straight to Luangwa river valley where we camped on the sh ɕ́ѡɥٕȰձ)́ɽ̰)饹ɱ䁵ɹɥ͔٥ͥ