So, who wants to know more about our fantastic holiday in Mozambique?? Okay, okay, don't all shout at once.
In short it was FANTASTIC! I'll start from the beginning so I don't miss out anything. Uh oh, this could be a long one. Make yourself a cup of tea and settle in.
And we're off!
We arrived in Swazi full of unspent giggles, ready for a glorious two weeks. However, the giggles quickly disappeared when we found that NOT ONE of our bags made it to Swaziland. Oh joy. And there was a queue of people who were trying to locate their luggage from a week ago. A week! Bloody marvellous. Luckily I'm married to 'Mr Charming and Fantastic' (self proclaimed) and he managed to track down some poor baggage handler's number at Johannesburg International Airport who literally turned around his little baggage handler's cart and went searching for our bags. Two day's later and in the nick of time they arrived. Whew!
This was nearly the last we saw of our precious cargo. Oh, and let me introduce you to Suzie, the Isuzu. She was our holiday mascot. That's the minature car, 'nana. The blonde on the left is me, the one on the right is Lianne.
Mum and Dad were super generous and lent us the Isuzu (big Suzie - see the connection?) for our travels along with fishing rods, big plastic boxes to pack all the food in, beach blankets, first aid kits and even a frozen lamb stew! Honestly, that woman is magic. A magic piece of loveliness.
Okay, back to the trip: first stop, Tofu, which was about an 8 hour drive. We stayed on the beach front in a newly constructed A-frame reed cabana with a sea view and a generous verandah which was perfect for soaking up some sun without being battered by the sand. I've been to Tofu before and it's got quite a lot more commercial than I remember. The fish are quite pricey if you don't do some serious negotiating, but the fact is you're buying fish right out of the boat, so it doesn't get much fresher than that. And we ate like kings! Crayfish, prawns, fresh fish - delish. And, of course, we didn't have to clean any of them thanks to the wonderful services of our (first) houseboy, Marco. The days were uber-leisurely. We woke up late, poured our first G&T at lunch, swam, fished (albeit unsuccessfully) and emulated old French men by spending hours playing Boulle on the beach.
One of the lovely idiosyncracies of this place was the shower with a built-in radio so we could listen to Portuguese FM while we soaped up. Especially funny in a house made of reeds with barely any hot water!
The local beer, 2M, was a firm favourite. See Suzie on Chris' glass.
Next stop, Vilancoulos. The road was great fun - driving was just like playing a Nintendo game where you had to dart left and right across the screen just to survive and reach the next level. In this case, if you didn't do some serious dodging you'd be swallowed whole by the potholes on the 'road'. Once we finally got there we were absolutely blown away by our accommodation, which far surpassed our expectations. Lap. Of. Luxury. Huge 4 bedroom-4 bathroom house with a massive kitchen and sprawling verandah overlooking the turquois ocean. With a plunge pool. Ridiculous.
AND to add to the ridiculousness we had a dedicated houseboy, Bernado, who absolutely loved trying to do everything under the sun for us. He'd greet us upon our return from ANYWHERE (even popping out for lunch) with chilled facecloths on a tray adorned with flowers. Oh yes, you read that right. Flowers. And scented facecloths. He was brilliant - with a smile that shone from the inside out. In fact, he was helped out by another houseboy, Gildo. Yup, two people who wanted to make us happy. Oh, how I miss them.
Meet Bernado and Gildo. The kings of all houseboys. And look how sweetly they hold hands.
Off the coast of Vilancoulos are 4 islands, most of which are untouched. Paradise. We did a spot of island hopping where we braaied our prawns on the beach, snorkelled a bit and had long walks on the beach. Chris and Li managed to squeeze in a few dives too. Honestly, four days of heaven.
Last stop, Bilene. Only about a million miles from Vilancoulos, but moving in the general direction of Swaziland, so technically heading back home. Bilene is a small town/village on a lagoon about 3 hours from Maputo. The 'sea' is therefore pretty flat and the beach is white sand, so it's gorgeous but lacks the drama that comes with the ocean. We stayed in a Cape Cod style house right on the beach, but the weather turned here and one day was too windy to get onto the beach followed by another day that was overcast and yucky for most of it, only clearing up later. So here's where we played one boardgame after another culminating in an 'Olympics' which was made up of Bat and Ball, Boulle, Connect 4, Speed Scrabble, Hats (throw cards into a hat about 5 metres away), 30 Seconds and Pictionary. Only problem is that Chris and I were teamed up against Mark and Li-Li and Chris is training for the Cape Odyssey (a 5 day race where you run a full marathon each day), so he's super fit. He also thinks he can handle his alcohol. We lost the first 3 games and had to drink as forfeits. In short, Chris was a mess after 4 beers. Lightweight.
And with that it was back to Swaziland, a quick pop in with Mum and Dad and the flight back to Cape Town. I can't believe it's all over. Or that it was a month ago. Sorry about the late post.
Anyone want to come and visit us now?