Today I learned that in the field of journalism I have to take risks, and unfortunately there isn’t always a reward for the work. We left Jo-Burg and some great stories, to take a chance in Mozambique. After our, what was supposed to be a 5-hour ride turned into an 11-hour ride, we arrived at a gorgeous beach town outside Maputo. The team settled in the hotel, sat down to dinner and I contacted our fixer. He was a journalist who had been working in the city for 12-years with a laundry list of contacts. We made our game plan, shut off the lights, and for the first time that night, I felt like we had a promising day ahead of us.
Charles our journalist-fixer met us at the hotel at 8am and we headed off to the President of Mozambique’s house to meet the Foreign Minister. We wanted to know why he was still letting his people leave the country, despite all of the opposition against foreigners in South Africa. Unfortunately, the Minister was unable to meet us at the last second, so it was off to the next stop, the passport office. There was a long line of people waiting to get passports to enter to South Africa, but none of them were interested in speaking with us. So, we headed to the taxi station and actually had luck interviewing a few people who were leaving for S.A. for jobs. After the taxi station, it was off to the border where we weren’t allowed to take video at the train station, the border, or speak to the head of immigration we were told we would have an interview with.
What a bust. We worked so hard and came back with… It felt like I spent a 12-hour day working at McDonald’s for minimum wage, only to come home with 60 dollars in my pocket, when I really needed 200. I suppose that’s how things go sometimes. At least we tried.
Thanks to Carol and Charlie for supporting our trip 🙂