From our time in Chipata (good research-wise but left something to be desired tourist-wise), we ventured westward to Katete. Based on the recommendations of other researchers met and the Lonely Planet, we stayed at Tikodane. Tiko is a local NGO, started and facilitated by a single, older mzungu woman who came to Katete ~15 years ago after her husband died. Her goal was to start a local, economically sustainable guesthouse and craft center. We couldn’t wait to get there!
Far and away, the most notable part of staying at Tiko was *the best* run had yet on this trip. We had a 9 miler to complete, and struck out around 4pm. We ran through the small village, past the local (very well run) hospital, and out to a village. It was GORGEOUS. The sun was starting its progression into a setting position, the road was clear of cars — just people walking and riding their bikes, the fields surrounded us on all sides, and we were on the slightest hill which afforded us views of the valley. As we ran through one small village after another, people would greet us and us them — but we felt less like a spectacle (as we do when running in town). We ended up jumping from stone to stone to clear a few creeks, running through banana fields, and along narrow pathways. On our way back, two young Zambians ran with us for one and two miles respectively — they just wanted to hang with us and chat a bit. Simply perfect — it was the kind of run you dream of having in “Africa.”