Just a short post to let you all know that I've arrived safe in Lusaka. I left London on Friday night and had a good flight, straight to Lusaka. There was a lovely lady next to me who was telling me about her visit to Milton Keynes to see her daughter. However, like me, I think she was glad to be heading towards the sun as the cold and snow didn't agree with her southern hemisphere bones! The flight was alot more civilised than those flights I'd taken to West Africa - no squabbling, no shouting and no praying in tongues to safeguard the plane from falling from the sky. We arrived in Lusaka to a temperature of 15C and light rain. Again, I was surprised by the airport. It was very tiny for a capital city and there was no shoving or pushing for luggage or taxis, again a first for my African travels!
Sara, the Director of Sunny Money Zambia kindly met me at the airport and drove me to my home for the next 4 months, a cottage at the Dutch Reformed Church in Kabulonga. I am nnot sure what I was expecting but certainly nothing as nice as what I was presented with. The cottage is the perfect size for one and has everything I need. Donna, the Pastor's housekeeper quickly took me under her wing and was visiting checking I was settling in OK, sleeping.
On the Saturday afternoon I went for an explore on foot. In hindsight I left at the wrong time of day and got a touch of sunburn but a good cold shower followed by my trusty Savlon and it quickly dulled down. I had a few interesting experience en route though - I saw the State House (and got told off for walking in front of it!), an amazing golf course and found my local banks, food outlets, supermarkets etc. My local supermarket is fab and has virtually all I could wish for; the only thing missing is Haribo but I will continue the hunt for that! I even have Nandos and Debonairs Pizza 5 minutes from my door so I won't starve, I may actually get fat :)
On Sunday I had a lie in and read my kindle in the cottage. It had poured with rain the night before and so I didn't want to get out for a walk in the mud. There's one thing you do have to get used to in Lusaka at this time of year and that's rain. You can see it coming, when the sky gets dark and it starts getting cold (I even sleep under a duvet as it gets cold at night) but you must always be prepared with a brolly and waterproof coat because you will most definitely get wet otherwise. Luckily I brought some robust shoes with me as walking to and from work involves a mighty trek through the mud.
Sunday afternoon Sarah took me to Mint Lounge which was a treat. They do amazing wraps, burgers, smoothies etc so it was a nice place to go. This Saturday however there is a craft market at the Dutch Reformed Church where I stay so I'm going to be investigating that. However, Sunday I may venture to the shopping centre or cinema.
Our office, which I was introduced to yesterday, is a lovely building in the suburbs. It's a converted house and I sit right by the front door so can see everything that's going on - perfecto :) I figured out Sage Pastel yesterday and worked out how to export to Excel (that took a while) and have reviewed the last month end's trial balance so my prep work for this month end is taking shape. Wish me luck!
There's a few pics of my accommodation below but I will try and get some more of the office for my next post: