With Mugabe’s catastrophic 40-year rule finally over, there’s optimism on the streets of Zimbabwe. Novelist Katherine Rundell revels in the newfound liberty of her childhood home

Three weeks ago a young elephant wound her trunk around my arm and began – politely, elegantly, insistently – to pull my hand into her mouth and suck the salt sweat off my fingers. It was the happiest I’ve been this year, that moment; partly because of the elephant and partly from that knee-jerk joy; the one that says home.

My mother was born and raised in Zimbabwe, and I spent part of my childhood in Harare; we left in 2001, but I go back every year. This January, I returned to a new regime, and a new feeling in the streets. Nothing yet has visibly changed, except that the police road blocks which used to spore across the city on payday have gone, but the air felt newly oxygenated.

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Source: The Guardian

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