Friday, January 27, 2012

4 Days in Maputo

This week has gone by so quickly I barely had time train, let alone blog about the (lack of) training! It was supposed to be a business prospecting trip to Maputo, the capital of Mozambique, and I must say I learned a lot about business here.

The city reminds of Luanda, capital of Angola, as it was back in the 90's, when I used to live there.  Very little traffic and an easy going environment.  Not like the hectic rhythm of Luanda nowadays. I got on the plane on Monday afternoon and it was pretty empty so I was able to sleep since there was nobody by my side on the little Embraer plane.  

As I arrived I had a driver waiting for me to take me to my guesthouse.  As I arrive to the guesthouse the guy at reception checks me in at takes me to chose from two available rooms they had ready for me. He opens the first room and the AC was on, nice and humble room.  The second was opposite the hallway and as he opens the door I see two huge cockroaches running from the door and hiding under the bed!!! ....WTF!?!?..."I'll go with the first room please!" I quickly settled in and tried to forget about that incident!

The following morning I woke up at 5 am as I wanted to go for a jog to see the Indic Ocean sunrise.  It was lovely to see the sun rise off the Maputo marginal (bay).  I think it was the first day back to school and I was surprised to see so many kids up at 5:45 and 6am walking to school! Everyone with their little uniforms walking together and you definitely see the excitement in the children's faces.  I suppose the first day of school is always exciting regardless of whether it' in the UK, Spain, Portugal or Mozambique!

That day I had quite a few meetings scheduled so I proceeded to fulfil my professional obligations but in the evening I met up with some friends who just so happened to also be in Maputo on business as well and we went out for a nice meal! I must recommend MarnaBrasa if you ever go to Maputo. It is a lovely family owned seafood restaurant and the the food is great! You will absolutely love it, but do expect to pay quite a bit for the food and service! It is, however, worth it.


I actually did this course twice, Tuesday and Thursday. Tuesday I did 13Km and took it a bit slower, but Thursday I stepped it up a bit and went 1 Km shorter.  The good news is that in one of my meetings here I was I met a lawyer who is helping us on the ground, and in the middle of the conversation I found out he is a triathlete as well, and he had just returned from competing in South Africa's 70.3 Ironman! He happens to be the national coach of the Mozambican team, and he is in charge of creating and developing the triathlon federation in Angola as well! Unbelievable coincidence, and I am really excited about the possibility of competing with the Angolan flag (if I ever make the team, of course).

I was supposed to have travelled today to Angola  today but I had a very important meeting confirmed as I was about to cross immigration at the airport so I decided to go back to check in, get my luggage back, and head to town to book a hotel room and attend the meeting.  This time I went t a different hotel... so no cockroaches!

All in all it was a great week.  Maputo is an easy going place and Mozambicans are very, very pleasant and lovely people in general.  Business-wise it was a very positive trip and will soon have to be back here, but for now, its back to the UK for 10 days before I travel again! In the meanwhile, here are some more photos of Maputo:
Hotel Avenida's Pool
Hotel Avenida's Gym 
View from Hotel
View from Hotel

View from Hotel

View from Hotel

Large Avenue in Maputo

1 comment:

  1. Buenas fotos! la ciudad transmite mucha tranquilidad!!
    Me imagino tu cara al ver las dos cucarachas! arghhhhhhhhh
    No tienes queja con el gym del hotel, muy completo!
    Ahora a disfrutar de Londres!
    Por cierto, sí me anotaré al triatlón series de Polar, hice el año pasado la distancia minisprint, y este año quiero hacer la distancia sprint, me hace falta mejorar mucho la natación, pero allí voy mejorando poco a poco :-)