Africa with Clinton: Malawi (Day 1/2/3)
On Tuesday morning, July 30, I boarded a plane with other delegation members headed for out first stop, Malawi. 15 hours and 2 fuel stops later and we arrive in Malawi, affectionately known as The Warm Heart of Africa. Transferred to the hotel for some down time before a delegation briefing and dinner at Mamma Mia, an Italian place in town.
But before dinner, a little shopping. (Was there any doubt?? I am my mother’s child!) The only person on this trip that’s a bigger shopper than me is the President! We were the last two in the store.
Wonderful dinner with Clinton and the delegation. Lots of interesting people. Should be a good trip.
Great day in Malawi yesterday. Spent the day at a Clinton Health Access Initiative clinic in Lilongwe, the capital. Great facility that helps clients know their HIV status, helps HIV positive mothers prevent virus transmission to their. Infants, and treats people with HIV/AIDS with proper medication.
Followed by press conference with President Clinton and Malawi President Joyce Banda, the first and only female president in southern Africa.
Then we headed to a rural farm where we interacted with local farmers and their families. And learned how Clinton initiatives are helping the farmers to grow their businesses with sustainable practices that protect the land.
Wheels up to Zambia. Flying with a former president is a different experience. Like, you don’t have to turn off your phone. Or fasten your seatbelt. Or keep your toiletries in those little bags. Customs? What customs? Someone takes your passport and returns it to you with all the stamps.
In Zambia, staying at The Royal Livingstone right on the Zambezi River and next to Victoria Falls. Dark when we landed so can’t see much. But we’ve been warned not to leave our patio doors open lest the monkeys wander in and steal our stuff. Looking forward to daylight to see my surroundings.