Thursday

Mopane Tree Lane: a novel of Zimbabwe

Zimbabwe houses some of the most magnificent natural wonders in the world, like the Victoria Falls, Mount Nyanga, the Hwange National Park, and also some spectacular man-made facades, like the Kariba Dam and the Great Zimbabwe Ruins.  But if you ask the neighborhood of Mopane Tree Lane, they will add that Zimbabwe is also home to some very colorful and interesting inhabitants.  There are of-course Ambuya Moyo and Amai Dongo, the “un-retired” proprietors of “Zimbabwe Confidential;”  the Ramchandras who are so independently wealthy that it is assumed they mint their own money;  the Eltringhams, who, though considered to be “Rhodies” by some, are as Zimbabwean as the soil itself;  the Pamberis, the childless, distant couple who cultivated an air of sadness and loss, while also managing to be prickly enough to keep company away;  the incorrigible Kudakwashe Muhombe, who lives in the neighborhood, but not quite.  Then there are the relative newcomers, the aloof Khans , about whom little are known, but many are curious.  There were even rumors that they may be vampire activity in their household.  And among such examples of interesting neighbors, it would be negligent to not mention the vadzimu (the ancestors from the spirit world) who are always present and looking over their living descendants, in every Zimbabwean neighborhood.