The 6th of August (Farmers’ Day, celebrated each year the first Monday of August) is a national holiday in Zambia and one of the main places to celebrate it is in the capital of the country (in Lusaka) at Lusaka showground, a wide area for different events and shows including a polo field and a stadium with a grandstand. The agriculture show takes place there and we are not going to miss it!
During the show that lasts from Thursday to Monday, the Showground gets hectic. There are dancers from different African countries, shops selling all sorts of clothes (even Italian shoes!) and food products among many other things. There are merry-go-rounds for children, candy sticks, soft ice-creams, fish/chicken and ships, lollipops, wine tasting, cafe`s, face painting (I guess I am invited for this when an Asian man passing by asks me if he can do me “ZinqZanqZui”?! )
Stands are advertising different products of Zambian companies, for example there is a provincial water company informing visitors of Zambia’s alarming water supply situation and banana farmers selling their different types of bananas. Bananas are usually very tiny here, a half or third of what I am used to in Europe, and a farmer at Showground who has on display large “to me regular” bananas sees my astonishment and explains that it’s because he has a special tree at home, in his background Usually you have to go all the way to Tanzania (so I’ve been heard) to be able to buy big “regular” bananas.
The highlight of the event is Mr. President Michael Sata’s delegation to roll down to the arena of showground, the same place where Zambia’s victorious national football team “Chipolopolo” celebrated in February after winning the Africa Cup for the very first time.
In a meanwhile when visitors take their shifts and obligatory safety measures are carried out people get entertained by motorcyclists racing, a rescue show by the Red Cross and representatives of churches. Also different military groups enter the field firing their guns and during the breaks children collect the bullets shot in the ground. I am trying my best to capture the vibrant atmosphere with my camera.
The festival continues till the sunset.