One morning we decided taking the local bus to the nearby town of Inhambane would be a fun and novel idea. We each handed over our 10MTS (R2,50) and boarded the relatively empty bus. We were the first stop, and each of us had a seat, with Miss Kelly and I across from each other on isle seats, and Nash seated in the back. After what must have been about 15 stops in 15 km's, about 150 people had boarded the bus and no one seemed to be getting off. I couldn't even see Kelly, and had a girl sharing my seat, one standing between me and the seat in front of me, and one resting her elbows on my head while she clung to the hand rail above me. I suppose I was better off than Miss Kelly, who later told me that she had a breastfeeding woman seated next to her, with a baby who insisted on placing Miss Kelly's hand on the feeding mother's exposed breast.
What seemed like 15 hours later (but was probably only around an hour) we finally arrived in Inhambane and were no sooner off the bus, than seated on the sidewalk outside a small cafe with ice cold 2M's in our hands, bought from a Portuguese lady who couldn't speak a word of English. We walked down to the nearby pier and after a quick once-over of the dhows, we decided a ferry probably a better idea. A few minutes later we boarded a ferry bound for the town of Maxix, a 20 minute ride across the bay. In Maxix we located an ATM and stood in a queue in a warm summer rainstorm, waiting to draw our mets.
We were completely soaked by the time we reached a small restaurant overlooking the dock. After flagging down a waiter who had been ignoring us for the past 10 minutes, we ordered 3 2M's and asked for a menu. "No menu", he said "We have chicken or fish" We ordered 3 portions of chicken. Not 5 minutes later we saw a nearby table being served a plate of prego rolls. "You didn't say there were prego rolls" Nash told our waiter as he delivered our beers. "You didn't ask for prego" he responded, obviously annoyed by our decision changing. "We'll change our orders to prego rolls. Can we have a plate of chips?" He left to get our prego's and chips and we chatted while it rained fat, warm raindrops all around us.
Our prego rolls arrived about half an hour later. All on one plate. With one knife, and one fork. No chips in sight. "Sorry, chips" our waiter said apologetically as he delivered our plate of prego's. By that time we were so ravenous that none us took the time to complain as we stuffed the rolls into our mouths between sips of now warm beer. I've never enjoyed a meal more.
Back in Inhambane we stopped for a drink at another road side cafe and were disappointed to discover that they didn't serve alcohol. We settled for a round of fruit smoothies before we headed to the market to shop for piri-piri sauce and cigarettes. When the time came to head home, none of could stomach the thought of another trip on one of those crazy buses. We found a taxi, and after making the driver promise not to fill it to capacity, we were on the way back to Tofo. Adventured out for the day, hungry for a plate of chips and ready for an early evening nap.
For a full gallery of the pictures, go here.