"We must Return" - Agostinho Neto (Angola Part 1)

The Angolans say those who drink from the River Bengo will never want to leave.  Well, in 3 visits I never made it to Bengo, nor did I drink from any rivers, and I still never wanted to leave.  In the following 3 blog posts I have aspired to show the exquisiteness of the Angolan people, the colour in their world, the traditional and the modern, and the senses of a country that, in the words of its first president, I will return to.

In a world where there are no facilities, everything gets used.  Here the Mucawana decorate their hair with "ringlets" made from Coca-Cola tins.

Soba, Cunene Province   ©24Atlantic

A young Himba boy pumps water from a well, which he will then carry home in drums to his village.

Onconcua, Cunene Province   ©24Atlantic

Rich, red, and ripe tomato harvests from Carujumba.

Namibe Provence ©24Atlantic

Children of Salinas, abandoned their games of playing with old buttons and pieces of glass to have their photo taken, which they so enjoy seeing on the LCD screen of the camera.

Namibe Provence   ©24Atlantic

A woman's work is never done...

Santa Maria, Benguela Provence   ©24Atlantic

Vibrant colours of tradition and beauty.

©24Atlantic

Young Himba woman, a tribe who have also moved down to the northern areas of Namibia.

Cunene Provence   ©24Atlantic

A group of Mucawana women on their way to Soba.

Cunene Provence   ©24Atlantic

Angolan Happiness!

©24Atlantic

One well usually provides water for a number of villages in an area, where locals have to walk to for bathing and collection.

Onconcua, Namibe Provence   ©24Atlantic

Hard-wearing hand-made sandals made from old tyres and strips of rubber.

©24Atlantic

Arm Art

©24Atlantic

Young boys are taught to herd and protect the family's cattle from an early age.  The number of cattle a family has is a sign of their wealth.

Cahama, Cunene Provence   ©24Atlantic

I loved the determination on this little girl's face, as if standing in defiance of her 2 brothers behind her.

Cahama, Cunene Provence   ©24Atlantic

Local lads Ricardo, Nuno, and Pedro, fishing for a living because they enjoy nothing more.

©24Atlantic

The prime of his life... Himba boy entering adulthood wears his hair in a simple braid to the back of his head.  This will be covered by a turban once he is married.

Soba, Cunene Provence   ©24Atlantic

Whereas your girls, before they reach puberty, wear 2 braids over the front of their face.

Soba, Cunene Provence   ©24Atlantic

This is Fernanda, a beautiful girl in traditional dress from the Mucawana tribe in Southern Angola. She was the only person we came across who could speak a few words of english, and she was hungry to learn more, to read and to write. This will not happen unless she leaves her tribe for a town where she will quickly become westernised and probably lose her traditions and contact with her family.