After Cape Maclear we went to Lilongwe to fill our gas bottles, get some supplies and to generally be closer to a hospital for Clayton should he have a relapse. The drive from Cape Maclear to Lilongwe was the best part of the day, leaving the lake behind for the fresh, cooler mountain air. Lilongwe is just another big city with rude people so after one day we were more than happy to leave for Senga Bay where we met up with M3
Other than being stopped a couple of times by friendly cops it was uneventful. Bertus recently started to backfire but only a little bit and definitely not something we are going to worry about now.
We stayed at Cool Runnings that is located right on the beach but unlike the other sites we’ve seen so far they actually use the fresh water to water their grass. Camping on lush green lawns was a nice change from the sandpits we’ve been staying in.
We were all a bit disappointed that the Lake of Stars Festival (held annually in October with local and international artists) was cancelled but coincidentally and luckily for us the Sound and Light music festival was on that weekend in Senga Bay. We were definitely not going to miss out on this one even though we knew nothing about it.
Being the responsible party-animals we arranged for a taxi to come and collect us but despite telling them that we will be 7 people in total, they still pitched up in their Toyota Corolla with 2 passengers already in the car.
MK10 000 (+-R200) pp later we entered the land of reggae. Full on Rasta vibes with joints being sold openly right next to souvenirs, other merchandise and food. Clayton (who apparently looks like a proper pothead to the locals) got offered an entire brick which he declined but for some reason felt bad about it so he had slap-chips with the guys instead (?!). Always the gentleman.
The actual festival was… an experience. The music was okay, not great but not terrible (except for this one all-female group who got stuck on the word fire – the only lyrics for a about 5 minutes while she walked up and down the stage). At Mk10 000 hardly any of the locals can afford to go so it mainly attracted the rising middle class of Lilongwe which I think were not informed about it…
I cannot remember what our plan was to get back to Cool Runnings (or if we even had one) but I do remember leaving at about 9pm (we got there at 7pm), walking back along the one road which we hoped would take us back to our camp. A couple of 100m down the road we managed to flag down a Taxi on its way to the festival and arranged with him to come pick us up on his way back. He also pitched up with 2 passengers in the car (?!). Marcia and her mom jumped in front while Matthew, Clayton and I got into the back with the other two randoms. Our taxi driver turned out to be an aspiring race-car driver, going 80km/h around corners that would be better at about 40km/h and he also had his own views on which side of the road you are supposed to drive. Fun times.