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Whether you are a Zambian, a resident, a tourist or just someone who loves this fabulous country, I wish everyone reading this a very happy Zambian Independence Day. It is amazing to be bordered by so many countries and be a beacon of strong and peaceful democracy amongst them. The independent, united and free people make it what it is, a very warm and lovely country. Once again, I wish everyone continued freedom and prosperity for many generations to come.

I was in Birmingham, UK, working after my studies when I was offered a job in Zambia. It was totally unknown territory for me, but something made me say yes and I jumped at it. This is now almost 10 years ago, and I have had the greatest time of my life. This is the country where I have turned from a teen to a man and I have thoroughly enjoyed every moment of it. I will always and forever remain indebted to this country and its lovely people. I always maintain that the people make the land what it is, and Zambia is one of the greatest examples of this.

After a couple of years of me fully settling in Zambia, I was lucky enough to have a chat with Andy, who used to be my boss when I was still working in the UK. I had a chat with him on Gtalk, also known as Google Talk, and it was great fun. Not that any of you would even remember the app, which I don’t think exists anymore. It was such a fun conversation speaking to someone I knew well but had never, I guess, ventured out of UK let alone Birmingham. Hence, he had a very myopic and innocent view of the world. Below is pretty much the conversation between one adventurous person who found a great home and one funny Brit who has no idea how the world works.

Disclaimer – I am pretty sure that he was totally drunk when he started chatting with me.

A = Andy

D = Dooderman

A: Karthik! How’s it going man?

D: Great, great, Andy. Very good indeed, how have you been? Great to hear from you.

A: I am well thanks, how is deepest Africa?

D: It is a lovely country called Zambia.

A: Niceeee, how do you like Zambia?

D: It is home now, fully

A: That’s excellent!

D: Yes, so much so in fact that the locals call me “Bush Man.”

A: Blimey, bushman eh? You, Karthik? Really?

D: Oh, Andy you see me as the couch potato from India, steeped in the convenience of the Western world, but here in Africa I have had to adapt and become one with the wild. No more cricket from the comfort of my couch, I am out every morning hunting my own breakfast before dawn.

A: Crikey Karthik, I really couldn’t imagine you bringing down a slice of toast let alone a wild animal.

D: Andy, you may mock but all I need are my hunting knife and loincloth.

A: Loincloth?

D: Most definitely. The locals are much accustomed to the nudity of native tribesmen but took offence at my Indian arse.

A: Wow…ummmm.

D: The jungle is now my home. After the mean streets of Birmingham and India, I find it comfortable and safe here. I need not beer nor color TVs, petrol stations nor housemates. I have all that I need. I am as successful with Zambian women as I was with English …

A: That bad eh? Oh well, you can’t have everything old man!

D: I have a roof over my head and food on my plate, a lot of nice people around me. What more could life need to be happy?

A: Tell me, have you seen any snakes yet? I have seen some TV programmes and there are some crazy ones out there. Hope you are being careful.

D: Surely, saw a black mamba the other day, in my backyard.

A: They say you should not marry it; you will be, ummm, killed.

D: I think you are referring to the black widow spider????

A: Am I?

D: I don’t know, you tell me.

A: What is that, when you marry, and you risk dying?

D: What are you on about? Your wife could kill you!?

A: Oh yes, she surely could kill you.

D: Why would she kill me? I meant she could kill you?

A: Can she? Is there something you know that I don’t?

D: Can we please change topics? You are not making any sense anymore.

A: Do you think I can visit Zambia?

D: Absolutely, I would be very glad to show you around.

A: Will you introduce me to the black widow?

D: Do you need to rest? Or is there an issue that you want to discuss?

A: Is it safe to be around the black widow only in your loincloth?

D: Andy, I don’t go around in a loincloth, I don’t even have one. I was only joking, thinking you were too. Why would I be wearing a loincloth? Are you drunk? What is wrong with you? What is your obsession with the black widow? I said mamba, Africa’s deadliest snake.

A: So, the part of you hunting every morning is also a joke?

D: Yes, are you kidding me!? You thought it was real?

A: Of course, I did! Why would you do this to me?

D: I did what now?

A: If you noticed I was a bit slow in typing every now and then, I was trying out a hand towel as a loincloth and really did consider moving to Africa and living the good life that you have!? You have just ****** with my feelings right now! This is not cool! I never thought you would turn out to be such a ****.

D: Are you serious man!? What is wrong with you? How did I give you any hope of moving to Africa and hunting with me?

A: Thanks for nothing!

Andy is offline. You can still send this person’s messages and they will receive them the next time they are online.

D: Andy! You there? Andy!

Andy is online.

A: Say bye to the black widow for me!

A: And you are still a ****.

Andy is offline. You can still send this person messages and they will receive them the next time they are online.

D: What?! Dooderonomy will resume later, until then, goodbye.

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