Friday, April 23, 2010

Another long day...

For some strange reason my body decided that 4:30am was a perfectly acceptable time to wake up... what??! Then my brain kicked into high gear and all chances of returning to sleep went out the window. I hate mornings that start like this! At least I did have a reason for getting up early today. My flight to Lusaka was coming in at 7am. The 3.5 hr. flight was thankfully uneventful, i wasn't sure how it would be as it's been a very long time since i've been in a cessna and never one this small before but thankfully i had no problems with air sickness or anything.

Mr. Bruce Poidevin (the pilot)was nice enough to drop me off at the Immigration office but couldn't stick around as he had other errands to run. Of course, wouldn't you know it, the office was closed for lunch and being Zambia they were closed from 12:30 to 2:30 (nice lunch break eh?!!). I looked around and realized that standing around in the little back alley was pretty much asking for trouble so i decided to head next door to the 5-star hotel. I had very little for breakfast and no lunch at this point so i tho't i'd check out their restaurant. When i walked in i realized i might be a little over my price range but it was too late to back out, they had spotted me! I thought to myself, "well, i haven't had a restaurant meal in at least 3 months, surely i can splurge a little". i asked how much the buffet was and was told K129,000 (US$28)....hmmm, not going for the buffet. I checked out the menu and found things weren't so badly priced. my biggest problem now was choosing what to order! Eventually i got the leek and muchroom quiche and a side of fries. What an amazing choice! The quiche was 3 little tarts, instead of regular pastry it was more like a yorkshire pudding. YUM!! served with it was this amazing little salad made of sliced and diced tomatoes, green peppers, onions and egg topped with a italian-like dressing. the fries were also amazing (partly cuz i haven't had my fav. food forever!). i was so stuffed i couldn't finish it all, but felt the place was a little to fancy to ask for a 'doggy bag'. i finished it all off with a cappuccino, which was kind of funny b/c i actually asked for 'a cup of tea', however the coffee was a nice treat. :) the whole thing ended up being a little more then i had tho't (they had weird 'taxes' added on) but for under $17 i thought it was an amazing meal!
by the time i was finished it was nearly time for the immigration place to be open again, so i waddled back over. after signing in i waited for 30 mins while the immigration 'officer' shuffled random files around on his desk. when he was finally ready to do some work there were 10 others in line with me. he slowly found everyones file except mine! he looked several times and then sent me out to the registration desk to look at 'the book'. i won't even try and describe that process as it beyond words!! finally i was able to find what i thought might be my name it said 'sheck allsa' and the file numbers was S0083 (i was told mine was S0085). i went back to the man and asked him to find that file. he did without a problem and it was me. they had issued the permit to "Ailsa Jean Sheach" completely missing my first name (thanks Mom and Dad for giving me too many names :P ). I was getting ready to freak out at them for screwing it up but he said 'oh, that's ok, no problem" grabbed my permit and added and "E." AFTER the Ailsa Jean.... whatever i give up. i took the permit, got my passport stamped and not officially allowed to work in Zambia until Feb 2012. it only took 4 months and then 2 hours today, but now i'm legally in the country :P

after this very trying experience i then had to catch a taxi and make my way around town to do some shopping. the Lord is good and found me an honest cabby (imagine!!) who took me to the shopping centre, waited 2 hrs for me to shop and then took me back to the flight house and only charged me K100,000 (about US$20). although i've heard that you can get it cheaper, i've also heard of others paying way more. so i'm quite thankful.

one day down, 2 1/2 to go!

1 comment:

  1. Gotta love Zambia! I'm so glad you got your permit, and now I'm jealous over your lunch! Interesting about the oil--its rather a shame though, as I love this area and it won't look as nice all dug up and industrialized. I'm sure a lot more junk will make its way up here as well... Oh well, who are we to stand in the way of progress!
    My crate saga continues--check out my Mom's blog.