Couchsurfing in Zambia

 Family dinner with Shima and traditional Zambian food

Family dinner with Shima and traditional Zambian food

Zimbabwe was a great first country to get my foot wet in Africa – it is a country with multitudes of friendly faces from left to right. And no, I did not get Ebola or Malaria. However, being set up in a 4 bedroom mansion with pool, personal maid and gardener, and chauffeur service was not the African experience I was expecting. So after tending to some personal things, I bought a one-way ticket to Zambia.

  My temporary housing quarters in Zimbabwe...I was living better there than back in the States. WTF.

My temporary housing quarters in Zimbabwe...I was living better there than back in the States. WTF.

I arrived in Lusaka, Zambia during the evening to see a wave of orange and red streaks lace the sky. Fresh air. No potholes! I’m home, baby!

Stacked with freshly minted Kwachas and my data-charged iPhone, I took a taxi to meet my Couchsurfing host, Jonathan Kays. And let me tell you, Jonathan was the men of men. Think the wits of Mark Cuban with the heart of Mother Theresa. Nestled within the traffic-laden streets of Zambia lies a house from the western world, and this is where Jonathan reigns. He not only founded 4 businesses coming form nothing but is also a Family Man at heart. He wined and dined me and even took me around to see his businesses. I can’t say enough of how truly great a person Jonathan and his family were in taking me in. Off to a great start, Zambia!

And off to a new adventure in the country’s capital! Lusaka! Actually…there’s not much to do in Lusaka. I venture the streets turning every corner to see the same exact construction site but with different men drilling. I had been forewarned…there is nothing in Lusaka, but you can try wandering. And wander I did. And lost I did get. I then stumbled upon Levy shopping mall, which was almost the best day of my life. I would eventually make a round-trip walk of the mall 5x until it was time to go home. That is Lusaka for you.

But my stay with Jonathan and his family was my highlight of Lusaka, and since accommodation, breakfast, and dinner were provided, I only spent $7 in my two days there. After 2 glorious and comfortable nights, it was time to take the bus down to Mazabuka, where I’d be volunteering for the next month in a school for the blind and disabled. No more chauffeur service. It would be me and my arms and legs. No more chicken pies. It would be me vs. a real life chicken. No more comfy bed. It would be and my mosquito net…