Meet Verrinia (VJ) and Stephen (Steve) Rees (above), travellers and Guests on the most recent edition of The Chanters Lodge Experience with the Milli Jam Ingredient featuring Jay Hillz. The Experience is our weekly Sunday night radio show airing for an hour on Zambezi 107.7 fm, Livingstone’s leading local radio station. VJ and Steve, Guests at Chanters Lodge, told listeners that they had only just arrived in Zambia following a trip through South Africa, Namibia and Botswana.
The couple told listeners that they hail from UK. In 2008 they decided to give up their well paid managerial jobs in local government and start to travel. They had subsequently been just about around the world following an itinerary they had drawn up in their early days together. They had met through work and friends and had been married for 19 years. “Was it love at first sight?” Wondered Milli Jam, who loves that question! Steve replied that he was ‘smitten’ while they were dining out for the first time together in an Indian restaurant in Maidstone, Kent, such that he failed to eat his curry!
VJ explained that she had been mostly employed as an archivist back in the day, while Steve was an environmentalist and clearly still maintains a deep interest in environmental and eco issues. Their visit to Zambia would not only include a visit to Victoria Falls but would continue with visits to both Kafue and South Luangwa National Parks. Steve said he had had a passion to visit South Luangwa ever since he had seen a programme in the Survivor series on UK TV when he was very young. He would soon realise his dream! Both VJ and Steve have a love for, and a keen interest in, wildlife. They talked of leopard and wild dog that they had seen on their travels in Southern Africa.
The music on our show was international, local and latest as usual. We opened with tracks from Lilly Wood and Ariana Grande. Milli Jam and Jay chose music from Pompi, Elbow, Eve and Chester ft IC. Our oldie of the week was a track from Jo Klasic ft P Jay called ‘Method 2’, and the prize of a dinner for two with drinks at the lodge that we give to the first person to text us the name of the performing artist on the track, was quickly snapped up by a certain Musa.
Steve and DJ told listeners that so far their visit to Livingstone had mostly consisted of sorting themselves and their laundry out, following months on the road mostly camping. They planned to visit both sides of Victoria Falls during their stay and were also interested in a sunset cruise as well as a swim in Devil’s Pool on Livingstone Island.
After their visit to South Luangwa they would be off to Malawi and Mozambique. They told us that due to more family issues than they had expected back in UK, they had in fact been back to Europe more times during their travels than they had originally planned.
Music wise Steve singled out Peter Gabriel as one of his all time outstanding artists. Generally he was in to rock but both said they had not much time to listen to music while they were travelling. Steve loves rugby and being Welsh born especially the Wales national team. He also supports Swansea City in the EPL.
Asked where they would like to be and what they would like to be doing ten years’ from now this appreciative, friendly and fascinating couple said they would like to be travelling – Europe in summer, the rest of the world when Europe was cold!