23 February 2013

Zambia: DMK's Davies Ingwe Finds Love of His Life

DAVIES Ingwe knows what it is like when a nightmare comes true.

At the age of six, he told his grandfather about his desire to marry a white woman.

He nursed that fantasy until he crossed paths with Laura Atkinson, a child specialist based in Melborne, Australia.

The rendezvous was Ndola's Plaza Five Cinema where a youth Christian film get-together was taking place.

The year was 2009.

He was wearing pink and when his eyes crashed with Laura's, he knew destiny was calling.

"I couldn't doubt for once that was my wife. She was shy and my heart was racing like a child," he recalls with graphic memory events of that afternoon.

Before the Plaza Five defining moment, a lot had been going on the part of Davies.

He had visited places and had seen a lot of faces while making music and tours with DMK a popular gospel group he founded.

Apart from performing locally, DMK has also performed in South Africa, Botswana, and Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC) and recently in Namibia where the group performed before a capacity crowd of 1,800 people at the Namibian University.

Other members of the group are Kelvin Mwaba and Mark Kabalu.

However, one afternoon, back home in Ndola, his female friend from Mobile Mission Maintenance, a Christian youth gospel outreach project, was arranging for her wedding and wanted him to be part of the line-up.

Unknown to him, when he agreed to be part of the line-up, he had sub-consciously signed-up for his destiny.

He later learnt that two white girls would be part of the line-up.

Right there and then, it sounded familiar to his hopes and dreams and so he took the plunge.

From then on, he grew curious and began pestering his friend to provide more information about two girls.

The first thing he wanted to know was their age. One was 29 and the other was 23.

"The younger of the two will be my wife," he told his friend, who took that as a joke at first.

She never realised Davies was a fighter and single focused.

The "never say die" spirit is part of his pedigree.

Born of a Lamba mother and a Zulu father, he is proud of his cross-culture heritage.

When, he was a little boy his grandfather used to flood him with all sorts of tales regarding history and the way things got by.

His love for hats and tweedy outfits is genetic.

His grandfather was a fan of such.

Anyhow, from then on, his friend became the intersection between the two.

She would convey the information to Laura and he would get the feedback, sometimes not satisfactory, but he never gave up his quest of chasing after his dream.

Thus, when Laura came to Zambia, common ground had been established between them.

She, however, was not sure of Davies at first.

And so she did not make herself available to him, which is why she preferred communicating to him through their established channel.

His surname in Zulu means Leopard, and by nature the leopard is not only graceful, but an ambusher.

He did not want to ambush her, but wanted to take things naturally.

"I would send texts messages to her, but she wouldn't reply to them. I only got feedback through my friend," he said.

His love could not wait for the opportunity to meet with her and he begged her through his friend for a date.

After several weeks, the date happed to be Plaza Five.

After the Plaza Five experience, one thing led to another and the rest is now history.

As Laura would write in her own words "It was like the beginning of a whole new adventure and I knew from that moment I saw him, he was the one for me. I felt very strongly in my heart that I could see a future".

They dated for two years, and in April of 2012, they got married in Tasmania an Island at the base of Australia.

Tasmania is an island state which is part of the Commonwealth of Australia, located 240 kilometres to the south of the Australian continent, separated by the Bass Strait.

The 26th world ranked Island and the state has a population of 507,626 (as of June 2010), of whom almost half reside in the greater Hobart princint.

When they began dating, he never wanted to fake happiness, which is why he was not under pressure to please her by keeping up appearances, or living a borrowed lifestyle.

By then, he was renting a servants quarters with group members in Ndola's Kansenshi area

"I took her to the house of my parents first. I wanted her to see where I was staying and accept me," he said.

He taught her how to cook Nshima and she has leant the art pretty fast.

Every time she would visit him, she would cook Nshima much to the surprise of his housemates.

By the time, he took her to her relatives; she had a concept of his worldview and culture.

Back in Tasmania, her mother was interested to meet Davies, perhaps approve of her daughter's zebra relationship, with the then 25-year-old ambitious youth.

She had learnt of Davies through her daughter's stories but she was eager to meet her prospective son in-law who spots a well groomed moustache and beard.

Thus, she flew with Laura to Zambia they embarked on an adventurous journey of knowing each other.

"We went places and visited a number of tourist sites in Zambia and Chobe in Botswana," he said.

After the adventure, Davies was accepted in the Atkinson's family.

Davies's love with Laura grew like tender twigs.

Even though they were thousands of kilometres apart, they nourished their love through Facebook and phones on intervals for two years, until that final day, when they tied the knot.

As they say, the rest is history; the two are now an item.

Sharing their backgrounds as a cross-culture couple from two different countries was something that they both knew was going to be challenging but their differences are the same.

"We don't look at our lives as those of two different cultures we look at them as being united and being one. I fell in love with Zambia back in 2005 and knew that one day I would end up here not knowing Davies at the time," she said.

They have got an amazing future ahead. Children are on the card for sure.

Like any other couple, they have had some melting points.

Being a multi-cultural marriage they have had to reach a compromise as regards to their worldview.

For instance, months after they got married he had no job but Laura had one.

Every time, she would get paid, she would bring the money to him to make a budget but he resisted the idea.

He was not just comfortable making a budget on the money he had not earned.

It took her grandparents' 'intervention' to make him understand that they were one and so her money was his and his money was hers.

In the western culture, there is an aspect of shared responsibilities when it comes to cooking and cleaning.

Unlike in the African culture, the kitchen is not a preserve of the woman.

There is equal participation even in aspects such as laundry, shopping and everything else.

One her part, she had to and she is getting to cooking African dishes.

"The one thing that I've learnt since getting married is that life isn't perfect and you'll always have your ups and downs along the way but the important thing is to always stay true to yourself and your parents, always pray and seek God," she said.

As a couple, they have plans to come up with a children's ministry of helping the underprivileged. They have a heart for children.

The couple has moved from Tasmania to Melbourne. Often the couple takes bicycle rides together.

Once in a while, Davies with the help of local musicians, does music performances at various functions in Australia.

He is also pursuing his studies specialising in business and accounts and recently enrolled at Brendan Shaw College.

As for the future of DMK, he said marriage would not affect the existence of the group.

They have formed a company.

"I came to introduce Laura to the rest of my family and also do a album with the group," said the musician who plays guitar and piano.

After the project, he would join his wife in Melbourne.

The couple has plans in future of settling in Zambia.

For now, they are build ing their lives through education.

They are indeed a zebra couple.

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