Swaziland is located on the mountain that it is hard to cycle, but enough beautiful. When I heard the name of country, I thought the country might be relative European country. But it is not. There is the king in Swaziland. Is there like the prince in a fairy tale?
18th Feb 2013
Though there are too many crimes in South Africa, I enjoyed so much cycling. Now I am nervous to cross the border of Swaziland. It is not my plan to cross the border today. Anyway here I come. I set up my tent at local’s garage at the late afternoon.
It is the local person who gives me the place to sleep. Their official language is Swati and English so that I could hear many things of their culture with her.
19th Feb 2013
In the early morning children are walking to the school on the big highway. The problem in Africa is that it is expensive to go to school and there is no good transportation. Many small children have to walk to school over 5 km or 10 km (3 mi or 6 mi) every day.
Today it is terribly hot.
Swaziland is very small country that I can reach the capital before the noon. I have the problem with gear, but I can’t find any bike shop. It seems that the capital is not much busy. The population is only 1 million in Swaziland. The ranking of their population density is around 120th.
South Korea is third!!!! It is so funny that government says we have to make more babies, because our population is going down!! Hahahahahaha…
Here is some ranking.
Ranking of Population
1st China, 2nd India, 3rd the U.S, 4th Indonesia, 5th Brazil
Ranking of Population density
25th China, 7th India, 76th the U.S, 29th Indonesia, 83rd Brazil, 98th Russia, 100th Canada
Ranking of territory
1st Russia, 2nd Canada, 3rd China, 4th the U.S, 5th Brazil, 7th India
It is crazy that too many people live in small country, South Korea! The most terrible thing is Korea is the number one of ranking for suicide in OECD’s country!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! Oh.. I am so sorry.. It is too stressful that many Korean kill themselves. The major cause of adult death is not cancer or illness, but suicide in Korea. The major cause of adult death is HIV/AIDS in Swaziland. It is ironically. I think culture leads people’s life different way.
Actually some culture is similar between Africa and Korea that to respect older people is the most important and we can’t call order person name.
Though it is super hot, the landscape is beautiful.
The east side is dangerous for Malaria in Swaziland. There is preventative medicine, but it is impossible to eat pill in whole life. The only thing people can do is just to run to hospital if you feel flu.
Whole Africa is not dangerous for Malaria that the route I cycle is free area of Malaria. But the next month I will enter tropics so that I must be careful. Malaria can kill people easily if people don’t go to the hospital as soon as possible after getting Malaria.
But actually I had already passed many Malaria areas. I’ve talked many times with people about Malaria. It seems like it is not good to have prevention so that I will not have it. I do wish I am not sick with Malaria.
African culture house; It is not far from the capital to Manzini that it is only 60 km (37 mi). But I am too slow.
I am too exhausted with hot weather that I just sit and drowse over one and half hours in a gas station. After 4 pm, I try to cycle again. But it is not easy that I am stuck on uphill. At that moment one lady stops at me and gives me help. She picks me up to her house. The right on the picture is Zoe who helps me and the left is her daughter.
19th Feb 2014 ~ 9th Mar
Zoe is supporting organization that she introduces me it, because I tell her I am looking for volunteering. She lets me stay her house during two weeks.
(Journal of volunteering -> http://www.universewithme.com/?p=7534 )
She is really cool that she buys motorcycle for her daugther! Zoe is good at riding a motorcycle and she can catch snake!
She respects all of life. Even this small things!
If somebody calls her to ask to catch snake, she go to their house and catch it. But the thing is she release to the forest!
Cobra can spit 2 m that she must wear something. This time is not easy. But yeah! She is coolest that it is no problem for her! Later she releases it at her back garden! It is really scary to me. But she tells me snake is not dangerous animal unless I hurt them. Pool snake throw up because snake was very nervous.
Today she has racing!
It is surprising that small children ride a motorcycle! I’ve never seen it! Wow ! Awesome!
Most of amazing pictures of her which I take are in her camera! She does very well!!
Zoe is the only adult woman in the race!
It is too shocking! How expensive in the world!! I am sure that it is the hell to Korean people who use cheap, fast and no limit internet! Internet of Swazi company is also very slow!! Thanks to Zoe, I could use her internet. During daytime I volunteer and during night time I write my journals.
This is Swazi beer! But usually people drink South African beer.
Every Saturday I go to restaurant with Zoe’s family and have dinner with her boyfriend’s family. On the Sunday they take me Game Reserve. It is a bit different from last time I visited in Mafikeng. It seems like it is more close to picnic, not safari!
I mean Safari is big tourist place to me. But for them, African, it is picnic place!
Such a cute Impala!
Warthog. This time is different from last time that they don’t run away.
Even Kudu come to our bbq place.
And steal my salad!!! I think they lost their wild thing. In Mafikeng, Kudu and other animals just run away as soon as they saw me.
Reading the book beside brook
The left one is Impala and the right one is Kudu.
My favorite animal was a zebra, giraffe and tiger.
I am not sure that I have ever seen African animal in Korean zoo. Everything is very new to me!! I want to add Rhino, Kudu, Springbok and Impala in my favorite animal of the list. I’ve heard that if I go up more north, I can see wild animal on highway.
This is Swaziland money. People can use South African money in Swaziland that it is 1:1. But Swaziland’s money can’t be used in South Africa.
The official name of Swaziland is Kingdom of Swaziland. They were independent from England in 1964. The head of state is the king or Ngwenyama (lit. Lion), currently King Mswati III, who ascended to the throne in 1986 after the death of his father King Sobhuza II in 1982 and a period of regency.
Elections are held every five years to determine the majority of the representatives. A new constitution was adopted in 2005.
But it seems that King has all of power that the TV and the press can never blame or complain about the king. I’ve heard that people can be arrested if they assault the king in the public. The king has not only 13 wives, but also much money! He spends lots of money to army, though there is no enemy country. I think the reason is only one that he is afraid to be attacked by citizen! Half of adult is HIV/AIDS in Swaziland. I think it is King’s fault!!! He only cares about stealing people’s tax! Swaziland has the lowest life expectancy on the planet: just 32.62 years.
Every night two of them come to my bed!
Zoe has three cats and four dogs. The first week I came she brought poor dog. There were many injury on his body and too thin.
I take the picture on the last day I leave. Totally he gets better. I learn many things from Zoe. She is really impressed person.
I have stayed almost three week with her family. I do appreciate that I got a chance to volunteer, thanks to her.
10th March 2013
I cycle the same route to go back to the capital.
Today is really cool!! Around capital it is really steep that I push my bike for three hours.
After then, Yeah! Downhill. But it is scary that there are not many cars.
Today I get the problem that I could not find the place to set up tent. Just before dark police helps me that they find the place for me in Private security.
11th Mar 2013
I love morning so much.
I feel as if I am still in the dream.
It is hilly today. After some point there is long downhill.
Swaziland’s mountain makes me remind of Andes Mountain where I had cycled. It is more beautiful road than other road.
But it is harder! I think I can cycle just short distance today.
It is really quiet that only 10 cars pass per hour. One local guy comes to me on that unpaved road where I can’t find any house. I am just too scared. I answer bluntly with holding pepper spray.
Oh.. There is much story why I am bluntly to him. Some of African thinks really different way that I must not give any chance to them. I will write about it later when I have the time.
I wish I have stun gun to protect myself. Sometimes it is really scary.
Today before sunset I find the local people’s house. During setting up my tent, they ask me to sleep inside of house, because it is too cold. They give me a basin. I KNOW about it! Because I read it on the book “Holding up the sky” which is the story of Austrian lady who lived in South Africa over 15 years.
But I can’t remember exactly how she used it. I don’t have the time to find the book, because it will get cool. So I just wash my hair and body. I can’t believe that I wash very well with only small amount of water. I feel so fresh.
There is shocking thing. A toilet is a bit far from house so that they give me a chamber pot for the night. And the chamber pot is what I used for shower. The basin is used for various purposes. I don’t use it in the night, because I didn’t drink water not to use it.
(Later I found words on the book. She used TWO basins to take shower in 1990s. )
It is Kitchen. They cook with wood. It is really cold in the night, but kitchen is so warm. (Some people think Africa is ALWAYS super hot. But it is not true! It depends on altitude and seasons.) She makes some floor and I learn a bit. I want to help her, but I am not at good. The stuffs are battery on the tool.
It is really friendly family.
12th Mar 2013
In the morning I see many small children walking long way to school on highway. And now they have to cross field. One of my dreams is to build organization to help neighborhood. I wish I can give them school bus someday.
I have spent three weeks in Swaziland. Thanks to Zoe I could volunteer. It is really beautiful country, but I am really sad to face their politic. In Kingdom of Swaziland, the prince doesn’t exit, but only dictator.
(Journal of volunteering -> http://www.universewithme.com/?p=7534 )
Days I spent in Swaziland= 23 Days
Distance of cycling in Swaziland = 262.07 km /163.79 mi
Cities I stayed in Swaziland= 4 Cities
Motshane, Manzini, Mhlambanyatsi, 10 km before border
Money I spent in Swaziland = $ 141 (57$ donation)(1$= 8.04 Rand)
People who helped me on the road in Swaziland=
Sebenzile Zwane (Motshane), Zoe Bosman (Manzini), Simon Simelane (Mhlambanyatsi security), Khulile&Linda family (10km before border)
People who donated to me
= Ville Ven?l?inen, 신현철, 윤정희, 하정혁, 이미은, David Osborne