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Inside/Out with Lindiwe Chaza-Jangira, National Director, Zimbabwe AIDS Network (ZAN)
Kubatana.net
October 22, 2010

Full interview with Lindiwe Chaza-Jangira - Read and listen

Describe yourself in five words?
Motivated, spiritual, laughing, loving and a-hopeless-romantic.

What's the best piece of advice you've ever received?
This was actually recently from my youngest daughter. She said to me, "You know, you spend all your life doing things for other people, sometimes you need to take time out, be a little selfish, and do the things that you really want to do." I'm hoping to have time to do those things.

What's the most ridiculous thing you've ever done?
I've done a lot of ridiculous things. Probably scaling a barbed wire fence and ripping my thigh, when I was sixteen. Also, I fell from a rock onto a stick that went through and came out the other side. I was a tomboy.

What is your most treasured possession?
They are two people - my kids. But my most treasured possession . . . that's really difficult. What would cause me, if I lost it, to almost die? There isn't anything like that. Maybe my DVD collection!

What do you regard as the lowest depth of misery?
Interesting that you should ask that question because yesterday I was saying to someone that I make misery, miserable. So that's the lowest depth of misery, when you make misery, miserable.

Do you have any strange hobbies?
Not a hobby as such, but a quirk that I have is I must always have even numbers. For instance, when I'm turning up the volume, I can't stop on twenty-three, it has to go to twenty-four.

What have you got in your fridge?
Milk, juice and mayonnaise.

What is your greatest fear?
My greatest fear is probably not to have an opportunity to accomplish the things I've set for myself and to achieve the goals I've set for myself.

What have you got in your pockets right now?
Nothing.

What is your favourite journey?
My best journey was my trip to Buenos Aires, Argentina. I'd never been to Latin America before and I was there at the time of my birthday. I bought myself my favourite creature. He's a butterfly. I bought myself my butterfly ring as my birthday present.

Who are your heroes in real life?
My dad is definitely a hero. I've got lots of other heroes at different levels.

When and where were you happiest?
I was probably happiest here in Zimbabwe when I was sixteen. I fell in love.

What's your biggest vice?
Smoking. But I have made a commitment to quit . . . very soon . . . sooner than we think.

What were you like at school?
It's amazing that in my earlier years, I was very reserved. I was very quiet and very shy. I was a tomboy. I fought with boys and when boys harassed a girl, I would beat the boy up for the girl. I was a feminist much, much earlier than I even thought. I was also very sporty and very active. I played netball, hockey. I played for the Mashonaland netball team. I was once swimming captain for my schoolhouse.

What are you doing next?
After this interview I'm having a meeting with my deputy director. Then I'm going to see what work I can get done. And my email inbox is full and also needs attention.

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