The Trip to South Africa

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The Trip to South Africa
The following article from describes the trip to South Africa. Lincoln Ama told us that once we lose the chance we should never get another one. I really liked this young man because to me he was a friend and a teacher of life skills, since he was funny and amazing. Not only was he able to come up with new ideas but he was also a true risk taker. Maybe he could have done better as an investor or was not the risk taker he seemed to be. I wished that God could grant me more years on this planet so that I could live to prove this. He could write many stories but one thing that he always got wrong was referring to himself as Abraham Lincoln. Unlike this great American leader, my friend could not even separate two fighting chickens and in short, he could never be a leader. Nevertheless, at this moment, he had defied all odds and he had planned a trip for us to go and watch the 2010 world cup in South Africa.

Our unforgettable journey was to start from the home country I loved to hate and end in Johannesburg South Africa. Saudi Arabia had been our home for a couple of years after we had fled Australia. I loved Saudi Arabia; unlike in Australia where they used to harass people based on their origin. There was security when walking on the streets like free people without fear of arrest or finding ourselves in the Guantanamo bay. The best part of being in our home country is that we could also plan and execute our trip to South Africa owing to the borders in the African countries and the corrupt officials at the border check points. We were used to crossing border and this trip was not in any way going to give us any trouble. In our country, we lived like fugitives and none of us had a passport but this was not in any way going to make us miss this significant event.

Ama was an amazing friend as well as a real schemer. Not only had he collected all the details including the maps that we needed in this trip but he had also planned for everything. His plan included a travel plan, a financial plan, and a time plan. In the travel plan, Ama had planned on everything that concerned our travel. I looked at our travel plan and I noticed that we were to travel on all means of transport available apart from air transport. In the financial plan, Ama had planned on how we were to spend our few dollars on food, cheap accommodation and transport where applicable.
It was 7.00 am local time and we sat quietly in a bus traveling from our area of residence to the town center. The bus officials were making their final routine checkups to ensure that everything was in order before the journey started. At times, I stopped and thought whether these people knew where we were going but nobody in the bus seemed to care. The journey to Town Center went as we had planned and there was nothing much to write home about apart from the beautiful mountains, valleys and plains of this beautiful coun

By mid-day, we were at the back street hotel where we were to have our lunch. We took our lunch, comprising of fish and other dishes of our choice that I did not understand what they were but I pretended as much as possible to be familiar with them. Unlike me, Ama seemed to know everything and I observed that he was enjoying his meal. After our meals, ama settled the bill and he requested the hotel attendant to keep for us our suitcases. He had a way of getting along with people, as he was a negotiator and a very good one indeed. We left the hotel and walked towards the seaport and the significance of this was to arrange for the next part of our journey, which was to take place through the sea. We were to board a cargo ship leaving for Mozambique the next morning and from there; it would be easy for us to get into South Africa. This part of the journey could not have been possible without Ama as he had actually planned and negotiated for this in my absence and we only needed to confirm that we would be travelling. We spent the rest of the day strolling along the coast chatting and watching the sea birds and honeymooners.

The following day we boarded the ship at dawn disguised as crewmembers to avoid the securities, where we had to do this for the sake of our dream "watching the big game." The ship left the port at around midday with about fifty crewmembers and the two football fanatics. I later learned that Ama knew one of the crewmembers from back home in Yemen and he might be the one who helped him to organize for the journey. I love the sea, everything from the winds to the sea birds and the horizons. The journey through the great sea took us about three weeks. Ama spent most of his time with his crew friend and I spent most of the time on the deck looking at the sea and our beautiful planet. I wished that time could slow down so that I could spend more time in the sea. At this moment, I envied the legend sailors of Portugal who spent most of their life in the sea. Despite the few times we were to hide in empty cargo containers when the bosses were moving around the journey aboard MV 69 is one that I will live to tell my grandsons.
It was early Friday morning when we safely stepped on the mainland in Mozambique. We crossed from the ship to the mainland with help of an angler who we had bribed heavily. As usual, Ama settled with him as I took our suitcases to a safe distance. From the coat, we went to Naamacha a town that is located at the border and here we hoped to get first hand information on how to cross to South Africa and if there was, we were to hire a smuggler who was to help us through. We arrived at Naamacha at around 10.00 am and we walked around the town looking for a place to rest and possibly have a meal. We had hardly walked for a few meters when someone appeared from nowhere and tried to address us in a language we did not understand. Actually, the person was ordering us to do something, I looked at him and with no doubt he was a security official. He handcuffed us and loaded us in a waiting van which was about to depart. Where are they taking us? I asked myself, do they know that the big game is about to start? Of cause, the game could go on without us. "But we must be there."

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