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Monday, January 12, 2015

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Hi Mike Please warn your readers walking their dogs on mount pleasant golf course that I saw a huge cobra there in the first set of gum trees. My dogs actually stood on it but it was sluggish and I managed to call then off by the time it reacted and reared. Could have ended in disaster. Thanks Lisa

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We returned to Harare on New Year's Day from Sabi Conservancy (Senuko Section) via Chisumbanje and Birchenough Bridge, then onto Mutare and HRE.

The so-called trunk road just beyond the Malilangwe boundary to Birchenough Bridge is a without question an unmitigated disaster, or essentially a write off (we "inched" our way mostly between 2nd and 3rd gears for much of that sector up past Sabi Arda and Tanganda). It took us 11 hours to drive to HRE via the SE part of Zims, when in reality it should have taken just on nine hours. I felt it most unfortunate that no signs were posted to indicate hazardous conditions ahead. What was even more horrifying was the senselessness of the lorry drivers and owners of many larny 4x4's who flew through along those broken up roads, seemingly oblivious to the dangers to themselves and others. Perhaps an appropriate word with the authorities would be in order, as the situation is not only dangerous, but the wear and tear on vehicles must be incalculable. How can this be accomplished? Thank you. Best, CG

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Reading this has prompted me to write about something that has been bugging me lately in this country.  You rightly mention about kids in cars that are not strapped in.  Even toddlers are allowed to stand between the front seats!!  Education in road and car safety has GOT to be promoted, children will do what their parents do, so we all have a responsibility.  Lets promote a safer year ahead. Georgie

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Hi Mike,  I am a bit late in commenting but I am shocked and distressed at how many dogs go missing from supposedly loving homes. How do these dogs get out of their properties??? We never drive in or out of our home without watching the gate to see that none of our animals has come out. when it is shut only then do we move. I believe it is straight neglect and thoughtlessness!!! Kerry

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Dear Mike, Please have your readers aware of a very well-spoken, well-dressed nerd-type (think Erkel:  tall, slim, oversized glasses and buck toothed) African gentleman visiting offices. He came to our office yesterday in Avondale off of 2nd Street Extension. He is very convincing as he spends lots of time asking thorough, intelligent questions about your product/service and in general, gaining your trust. He then very stealthily turns your attention to his business – he sells HP computers. Here’s how:  he tells you that he is interested in your service/product, but must come back because he is particularly busy and must go because today is a one-day only deal that HP gives their staff members once a year:  he is allowed to buy any product at cost. He must go and pick up computers before HP closes. If you are in the market for a computer like we are, you are very interested in the ‘cost’ price of that laptop you’ve had your eye on…which, by the way, we still scratch our heads about:  ‘How did he know that we wanted  computers? We’ve never seen this guy before in our lives!’  We order the laptop with him, pay him the ‘cost’ price and he promises to return before end of day. Yep, you guessed it:  he never came back. And before you ask:  yes, we did collect his ID info -- he goes by the name of Talent Gutsi (National ID #63-884761-907), phone number is 0772 046 106 and lives at #45 Bowood Drive in Mt Pleasant…off course, none of this bogus information pans out. He is a thief and don’t believe a word he says – even from kind, sweet, nerdy Erkel!  Signed, Red-Faced but Wiser

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This beautiful dog is lost. She turned up a few days ago on the plot next door to us which is unoccupied and has been keeping the security guard company. We are just off Ridgeway South.

If anyone knows where she comes from please call - Carine 495949 or 0775 009080


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Reading about that I feel that I must relate my story concerning the Beitbridge Border on the Zim side.

 

My husband and I were at Lion and Elephant for the night of the 28th Dec 14 having coming thru the border earlier.  At supper I noticed two ladies on their own and we started chatting.  It turned out these unfortunate ladies (ex Zim)   -  sisters - one partially disabled - had spent from 10am - 3pm that day on the Zim side,  were scammed and terrified out of their wits. Basically told by touts they had to pay for this and that - even duty on one of their personal cameras!! They did pay (which they couldn't afford!!) but obviously no receipts. We felt so sorry for them and also embarrassed about the incident in our country, we had them follow us into Harare the next day and delivered them safely to their family (they were coming to Harare for a wedding).  I was worried about them being further terrorised at any road blocks - which luckily did not happen.

 

I did see at some stage last year  "Tourism" officials at that same border and funnily enough I saw police with "Tourism" section printed on their yellow vests as we drove back into town that day.  I hope something is being done, as the border is pleasant and the officials are great - we were 30mins on both sides coming back in.

 

Maybe a tip for people reading this, is to warn family/friends coming thru the borders to not speak to or entertain any people milling around who are not proper officials - the only money to be paid over at the Bridge is the toll fee and road access - the TIP on their vehicle costs nothing but you have to buy the insurance. Also any valuables cameras, laptops etc have to be declared.  If in any doubt over anything speak to people behind the counters only. 

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