A First Time for Everything

Ever since arriving in Zambia, I have experienced a lot of firsts – first time in Zam, first time in Africa, first professional job – but this past weekend Mwansa and I welcomed our first visitor, and it was amazing!

Alexis, another ZamFam fellow in Lusaka, dared the 7-hour bus ride to spend the weekend with us. We were happy to have her visit and would have gladly sat around all weekend just spending time with her, but to make the trip at least worthwhile we tried to plan around load shedding to do some fun activities!

On Saturday, we had an early morning workout at my gym. I was happy to show her where I disappear to every day, and we both enjoyed our workouts. Afterwards, we found a swimming pool at Sherbourne Lodge where they sell day passes to use the facilities. This was a great find because Mwansa and I can easily walk there and now that hot season is in full force, we will definitely need a place we can go to without relying on anyone else. In the evening, we took her to our favorite Indian restaurant, Mukwa Lodge. I was so happy that Alexis seemed to like it because I have been talking about this food nonstop since I first ate there. I wish I could eat there every single day! Our neighbor and friend, Jiksha, joined us at dinner and it was so special to be able to introduce Alexis to some of the people we hang out with.

On Sunday, we took her to Chisokone market in search of chitenges (because we both have chitenge fever). It was nice to show her the central place of Kitwe that is much needed and often avoided, but since it was a Sunday and very slow we did not find many chitenge shops open. We did see lots of beautiful fruits though! Afterwards, I dragged Alexis to AfterTen, the seller of the best chicken shawarmas on the Copperbelt. Since AfterTen is a Kitwe delicacy I make every person who passes by stop there. It also helps that the garlic sauce they use in their shawarmas is delicious. Again, I was very happy that Alexis approved of the meal because I talked it up way too much.

We enjoyed a quiet evening before having to hug Alexis goodbye the next morning as she headed back to Lusaka. The goodbye was not too bittersweet because we will be reunited with ZamFam this weekend in Siavonga for our GHC Quarter 1 Workshop. As Alexis was walking away, I leaned over and told Mwansa that this was the best weekend I have had in Kitwe thus far. It was special to be able to share our lives with a friend and to play hostess again. These are just a few of the activities any visitor can expect to enjoy if and when they make it out to Kitwe!


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