Business around Bulawayo took a halt yesterday (11 April 2012) when Austrian nationals, Mr Alex Weber and his partner parked their vehicle they have drove from their native land to reach Bulawayo.
The vehicle has signatures of people from all the countries the couple passed through. The driver of the Ford vehicle told this reporter that the journey to Bulawayo took them four months on the road and shall end in August when they get back to Austria.
He also said the drive was partly inspired by the desire to learn about different cultures in the continent of Africa.
“The reason why we drive is to get experience and to learn about the different cultures around the world. We have been through fourteen countries some of them are Italy, Greece, Syria, Lesotho, South Africa and Zimbabwe. We have experienced different cultures and attitudes in those countries but generally there is no place where we can say we were not received well”, said Weber.
There were mixed feelings about the tourists among the residents of Bulawayo. Some welcomed them saying other explorers should pass through Bulawayo like the Austrians.
“It is actually my first time to hear that a person can drive from Austria to this part of the world. We encourage other tourists to do the same and pass through Bulawayo as well”, said one female resident.
Others exercised caution on the signatures around the car and how there are going to be used. Zimbabwe being a mostly religious country, one woman said she is afraid of the tourists.
“We are not sure what these people are going to do about the signatures we put on their car. With prevalence in Satanism, maybe we have just signed our death warrants.”
Zimbabwe is one of the leading tourist destinations in Southern Africa. It boasts of housing one of the Seven Wonders of the World â” Victoria Falls. The country shall also be hosting the United Nations World Tourism Authority Organization Summit next year. It shall be held in Victoria Falls and thousands of tourists are expected.