03-23-2013, 03:37 AM
Living on a DR
Joined: Jan 2006
Location: New Delhi - new 'home' for post RTW
Mozambique, Part 2: Heading across Niassa Province to Pemba
December 7 - 11, 2012
After my little break on the shores of Lake Malawi, I headed east, across the remote region of Niassa Province towards Pemba, on the coast. Mozambique is developing quickly with the Chinese laying new roads everywhere and the route that heads east from Lichinga to Pemba was in varied states of construction. The middle portion, the farthest from civilization on both sides, is still a little track through the forest that I highly enjoyed. The rainy season was fully underway now and I sought shelter from a fast-moving thunderstorm with some villagers in their hut. The track was either hard-packed mud, that turned slippery when wet, or sand, which was surprisingly easier to ride when wet. I emerged back into civilization on the other end and headed for Pemba, where I enjoyed fresh squid and octopus.
(Click on the panoramas for the full size image.)
Heading east out of Lichinga and enjoying the twists and curves in the mountainous north of Mozambique.
Panorama of the distractions that a rider through Niassa Province experiences.
I was in the thick of the rainy season. It comes in quick and then moves on. I just missed the rain here and got my tires wet to increase their mileage ever so slightly.
The grand inselbergs that dot northern Mozambique. These are remnants of old volcanoes where the outer rock has eroded to the form the surrounding plains and the inner, harder rock, usually granite is left behind to stand proud.
A woman ploughing her farm under the shadow of an inselberg.
Quite a dramatic setting to have in your backyard. Can you see the creature in the inselberg? There are two eyes on the small head and a slanted mouth.
That same inselberg from another view, showing that seeing faces in inanimate objects is just a trait of the human mind, as we're hard-wired to pick out faces.
Crossing a little bridge in Niassa Province.
A view into the distance with a jagged horizon of inselbergs in various poses.
Ooh, an elephant crossing sign, telling me that mama and baby elephant only cross in curves, ok, so on the straights I'm good.
Mango season is in full bloom and I passed numerous trees with brightly-ripened, juicy mangoes, just waiting to be picked or thrown at by kids.
The only hotel in Marrupa, a small town about a third of the way to Pemba. This basic residencial went for 400 Meticais ($13.50) and came with a hot water bucket bath.
I was walking around town and came across these guys playing a Mozambican version of the age-old game known as Bao or Mancala. The rules are quite complicated but the general idea is to sow and capture seeds. The earliest evidence for this game comes from northern Ethiopia and then it got picked up by the Arabs who introduced it into East Africa and other parts of the world.
The vegetable market in Marrupa with only the basics of onions, tomatoes and beans.
I was buying some bread and noticed these guys playing a game of checkers. Nice use of bottle caps.