I would have preferred to leave the country after the first few days in Zambia. In no way does the country of Tanzania differ in the north. Although the roads were better in quality but there is also a mud hut after the others, which are crammed with people. In addition, slash-and-burn is practiced here in even greater style than in Tanzania. Almost no stains land that is not burned. A totally frustrating and bleak sight. The supply of provisions is really difficult. Especially if you are a vegetarian. Even in larger towns you will find hardly smart food (I can not even see corn porridge) and water is almost exclusively only in 500ml bottles to buy. Fortunately, I had a few big bottles in my luggage. Temperatures meanwhile rose to almost 40 ° C and so I needed 8 liters of drinking water almost daily. I can not transport so many small bottles on my bike. In addition, prices here in Africa are generally quite high for food and water. By comparison, Europe is a low-price continent.
A small ray of hope took place on the fourth day. In a small village I found a small shop after a while. The saleswoman opened the freezer and I could barely believe my eyes when I saw a bottle of Ice Tea in it. It must have been at least a year since I last had ice tea!
Even the drivers here in Zambia are extremely ruthless towards the cyclists. I used my middle finger pretty often. These idiots endanger by their driving not only themselves but also all other road users. In addition, the vehicles are partly in really bad condition.
In Mpika I reached the Great North Road. On this road many goods are imported from the coast in Tanzania (Dar es Salam) to Zambia. In particular, oil, which is driven by countless trucks (of course, the notorious Tanzanian truck drivers) through the country. Most of the time I had to jump off the road if they overtook me at full speed and honking loudly. Internally, I cooked in the evening really out of sheer anger.
Somewhat outside of Mpika I suddenly discovered a cyclist on the roadside. Jang from South Korea is also heading south. We were both happy to finally have a passenger.
Jang cycled 17 months from South Korea to Thailand, spent some time in Nepal and Egypt and then cycled from Uganda to here. His destination is Cape Town. With his 63 years, he is rather comfortable on the road. Exactly the right thing for me. Together with him, the many people suffered much easier. We had a lot to fight with the many fires. Sometimes the whole street was full of smoke, so you could not see anything at all (as in fog) and you had a lot of trouble breathing.
Once we set ours up in a forest. We had already cooked our dinner and were about to retire to our tents when two men lit a bushfire about 100 meters away. The wind blew the fire away from us but what would happen if it suddenly turned? The two guys did not seem to care that much. After everything started to burn, they just disappeared again. Compared to such people, I can only feel anger and disappointment. At some point, out of sheer frustration, I said to Jang, "The people here are just so black because they are constantly setting everything on fire." We both had to laugh.
We then decided to change to the other side of the road so as not to be grilled in the middle of the night. Jang had a speedometer, unlike me, and always made sure we cycled 80km every day. In Kapiri Mposhi we reached the main road T1 which leads to Lusaka, the capital of Zambia. Here traffic increased once again. In this area I saw for the first time since the Sudan again right fields that are managed professionally. The sight reminded me almost a little of Europe and made you forget that you are actually in Africa.
We were both extremely happy when we finally reached the capital after 13 days and were able to relax for a week at the Wanderers Lodge. We met Daniel from Germany, who is cycling from Cape Town to Cairo. Wesley also arrived from South Africa. He cycles from Kenya back to South Africa. Most of all, I was happy to meet Olivier from Lausanne again. He cycled away from Switzerland 6 months before me. We were in permanent contact and by chance our ways crossed here. It was tremendously nice to finally exchange experiences with a couple of cyclists.
Unfortunately I had with a few young Swiss who also on the campsite were a small dispute, because they did not keep the night's sleep and I wanted to complain to them. I liked the many supermarkets and shopping malls here in the city. If you have to shop all the time in small shops is such a really big supermarket already something great. Jang shaved my hair off my head with his electric machine. We got back in the saddle after 7 days to cycle to Livingstone.
The monotony went on exactly the same as in the north. Zambia is about as big as France, England and Ireland together. However, almost everything looks exactly the same. As in the rest of East and Central Africa, the entire landscape is cut down here as well. As a result, you can only see bush landscapes. From Ethiopia down to here. I'm pretty much convinced that Africa will soon turn into a total desert landscape if it does not happen soon. Again and again we drove past accidents. In the driving style here, this surprised me not at all.
The streets here are not entertained. On the side strips are everywhere broken glass and other trash rum. Since we often had to drive to avoid traffic, we got a plate almost every day. Over time we baptized the road from Lusaka to Livingstone
In Livingstone, we found our ideal campsite at Jollyboys Camp, where we could relax a little after the nearly 1,500-kilometer drive through Zambia. But unfortunately every night in the whole city was caused by the night clubs noise. The times when the Africans were still sitting by the fire with bush drums, dancing and talking to each other are past. The modern African gets drunk in the nightclub and turns on the music system until sunrise. Finding a quiet place in Africa where only animals and nature can be heard is almost impossible.
In Dar es Salam, at the Zambian embassy, I was assured that my visa is valid for 3 months. However, you have to appear every month on the Immigration Office and pick up a new stamp on the exact day on which the visa expires. For individual travelers a total nonsense. Long live the African bureaucracy!
What also gets on my nerves slowly are the constant power outages here in Africa. There is more wind and solar energy here than probably anywhere else on our planet and people just are not able to use it properly. Sometimes I can only shake my head in resignation.
After a week in Livingstone, Jang decided to continue cycling towards Botswana. I had to wait a few more days to not get in trouble with my next visas. So it was time to say goodbye. Thank you for the great time Jang!