Cape Maclear - Cuamba = 279 km
|(Stole this from Google image. But this vaguely resembles the mental image I took. Close enough.) |
I have never in my life been dirty to the extent that I have in Mozambique. At the end of this particular day, I would take a bucket bath where the bath pooling around my feet was so brown I couldn’t see my toes. But that’s later; at this point in the story, it was simply me, Emily, Annie, a looooooong stretch of dirt road and the open sky.
When we finally arrived in Cuamba, Emily and I said tchau to Annie, who was catching another chapa back to Gurue. The two of us then sought out lunch and the train station, our plan being to spend the night with PCV Jama and hop the 5 am train to Nampula the following morning.
The train arrives anywhere between 15h and 19h, and it is only then that you can buy your tickets. Emily and I planted ourselves in front of the ticket window around 16h and passed the time reading, resting, dreaming of showers, and chatting with fellow travelers we met – a young couple doing a sub-Saharan Africa tour from France, and a middle-aged couple traveling Mozambique from Spain. And we waited, as the plaza slowly filled up with people.
Thankfully, before the even started selling the tickets, I receive a message from Jama saying that she was friends with the station master, had reserved our tickets, and needed only to find and pay him to get them. So I moved in the opposite direction of the throng, found the man who was quite amiable, and had the tickets in my hand before the ticket window opened. This is why PCVs are awesome.
Once we got our tickets, we found our way to Jama’s house, where she and PCV Zacarias had already prepared dinner. I finally rinsed that layer of dirt of my skin. And we crashed in bed.
Cuamba - Ilha de Moçambique =531 km
We snuggled into our cozy compartment for the 11-hour ride, most of which was spent chatting, reading, sleeping, snacking and watching the mountains fly by the window. By far the best way to travel in Moz.
Unfortunately, a large number of the vendors were kids, which made the whole money/goods exchange out the side of the window a bit tricky.
And we were off to Ilha.