Shorthand Typing in Zambia by Sheila

Sheila was born in Bulawayo in Zambia. She started work in 1958 at the age of 18 following her sister into the world of shorthand typing. Her grandfather was a pre-pioneer moving to South Africa  from Germany in 1888. Her Father was a diesel mechanic and worked at copper machines in Zambia then he came back to Bulawayo. Her husband went out as a policeman then worked in immigration and then the United Tour in Zimbabwe. Moved with him to Kariba and went to Victoria Falls working in tourism. Sheila worked in the office with two secondary assistants. Tourists came from all over the world. There was a fleet of 30 cars and taxis. Her job involved sorting out the wages, general office, banking and drawing up the ledgers. There were a wide variety of jobs to do.

During the 1990s worked at a fishing camp called DeKa Drum. Her brothers own it. The origin of the name is from when the drums were beaten to warn of the arrival of the slave traders down the Zambezi River. It was an area famous for its Tiger fish and Bream. The camp is at the confluence of the Deka and Zambezi River. It had a bar, restaurant and a few chalets. It was primarily a sports fishery.

Operation Raleigh used it as a base to raft themselves down the Kariba. Their project was to build a school. Part of the trip was staying out at Decca. Her husband Jock put on a fish BBQ as part of the tour. The group came once a year if they were in Matabeleland. 

The currency situation got a little crazy between 200-2004 and people were walking around with suitcases of the local currency. Now they use Rand or US Dollars.

Memory contributed by Sheila Cruickshank from Lossiemouth

Additional Information

Operation Raleigh– current site

A journal report from the Deka Drum Fishing Camp with pictures


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