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History

Marcos, Maputo, Mozambique.
Marcos interviewed us for his weekly radio magazine "Mozambique Mirror". We asked him to give us an interview in return.

"Germany is a developing country."

Where are you born? What do you like about the place/country? I was born in Tete, Mozambique in 1952 and lived there for my first 15 years. In these days Mozambique started to fight for his independence. At the age of 15 I went to Tanzania to join the Front for the liberation of Mozambique. I was trained but luckily I never had to fight and never killed anyone.

But after 2 years I decided to leave the Front and went to Nairobi, Kenya. I lived and studied there for the next 12 years.

1981, at the age of 28 I went to Cologne in Germany. 15 years later I thought, now I live in Germany as long as I had lived in Mosambik! If I would have stayed another year I would have stayed in Germany forever. But I decided to go back to Mozambique.

In Mozambique I like the people. Of course there are every kind of people in each country, but in general the people of Mozambique are very heartful. I like the climate. As I came back from Germany I had aching bones, but after one year all the pain disappeared.

Today I live in Maputo. The city has good job opportunities and an international flair. All the embassies and NGOs are in Maputo. And I can work as an interpreter. There is a lot of culture in Maputo. Exhibitions, concerts and museums. I like especially the Museum of Natural History.

What I don`t like in Mozambique is the poverty. A lot of people live in very bad conditions without a chance for a better life. There is no effective social welfare. You are born in Mozambique, you live and work here, but the government doesn`t care about you. Everyone is on his own. On the other hand there are also very rich people. The gap between rich and poor is very big.

Usually the Salaries and the costs of living don`t fit together. That`s really bad. Not only for the very poor. Even people with a good education and a job don`t earn enough for their living. I am a teacher. Teachers have a lot of work but don`t earn much money. Therefore I also work as an interpreter and as a freelancer for the radio.

Do you know anything about Germany? If so, what?

As far as I lived in Germany for 15 years I feel as I am half a German. I worked for Deutsche Welle, Deutsches Rotes Kreuz, Deutsche Stiftung fuer Internationale Entwicklung and other organisations.

I like the order and punctuality. I didn`t like it that much as I lived in Germany, but back in Mozambique I miss it. In Germany everything is organized which can be quite an advantage. For example I learned to manage my finances.

There are some really nice people with a good heart. You have to be open than you can live very happy in Germany. You have to be the one to contact other people, otherwise it is not so easy. Every person has two sides. I always looked for the positive one. At the University it was not so difficult to find friends. My best friend was Birgit. Before I met her I didn`t believe that men and women can be such good friends only on an intellectual level.

The jokes about black people were sometimes annoying. I learned to deal with it and joined the game by making jokes by myself (e.g.: ich habe mich heute wieder schwarz geaergert).

I had a very good experience with a very heartful and lovely family in Germany. They offered me to be part of their family. They already had 5 children. They themselves had lived as missionares in Mexico. So they knew how you can suffer as a foreigner far away from home. The love they gave me, our relationship from heart to heart and to be part of the family was the best I experienced in Germany. Since then I know that we are all Gods children and all the same.

What do you like to celebrate? Karneval in Cologne, Germany, is my favourite festival.

New Years Eve is very important for me. We always have a cake on New Year. And I like birthday celebrations.
Have you travelled before? These are the places I have visited:
Europe: Netherlands, Portugal, France, England, Belgium, Luxembourg, Switzerland, Italy, Cyprus, Spain
Africa: Mozambique, South Africa, Namibia, Kenya, Mauritia, Uganda, Tanzania, Egypt, Cameroon, Sambia, Malawi
Asia: Taiwan
Canada

It is difficult to say which journey I liked the most. Maybe Taiwan. It was my first visit to Asia. Egypt was very impressive because of the historical sites. Cameroon because it is so african. In Cameroon you find every african face you can imagine.
Where would you like to go next? I would like to visit Germany again. Germany is a real developing country. All the time there are a lot of changes. Once I went to the main station in Frankfurt where I haven`t been for two years. It was difficult to recognize it because they changed so much.

I would also like to visit the US, India and Finland.
What means of transportation do you normally use? The car, sometimes a public minibus (chaba).
With how many people do you live together? With my wife.
What do you especially like to do? Alone? With your family/friends? I like to write. I would love to publish a book with songs for children in our language Cisena. Cisena is one of the two common african languages in Mozambique. There are 4 to 5 Million people speaking Cisena.

I like to play table tennis and chess.
What event in your live has moved you? There have been a lot of milestones in my life. Maybe these are the important ones:
- At the age of 10 years my mother died. I didn`t know her so well but I missed her all my life.
- The decision to leave Mozambique at the age of 15.
- To resign from the front of liberation and to go to Kenya at the age of 17.
- The birth of my first son in 1971.
- 1981 Degree in Nairobi, Kenya.
- The birth of my second son 1977.
- The offer of the German family to join them, their love for me and my love for them.
- 1996 Decision to leave Germany and to go back to Mozambique.
- The birth of my first daughter in 1997.
- The birth of my third son in 2000.
What would be your fondest wish? My wish is also one of the reasons I left Germany. I want to return to the village where I was born and cultivate the land of my grandfather. The land is so fertile and beautiful. If I can realize this before I die I will be a happy man.

I want to know the answers of questions like:
Why I have been born? Why in Mozambique?
Who am I? Who have I been in my former life? I study these philosophical and spiritual questions for 20 years now.
Do you have any message or advice for our readers or us? It`s possible to have more love in the world. We just have to try a little bit more.
Marcos, 51 years, 26.04.2004, Maputo, Mozambique.

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