Posted by: wildsidezambia | August 11, 2012

Maya meets the Queen

 Maya Elisa Barajas Tavera (14) of Los Angeles’ dearest wish was to meet up with Queen Makuti again during her visit to Southern Africa.

They first met in 2010 in the holocaust museum in Los Angeles.  A group of Zambian business ladies led by the first Lady at the time Mrs Banda and her majesty Queen Mukuni, visited the museum. Queen Makuti had taken the time to chat to the young girl, which impressed Maya very much.

Maya is a member of the Los Angeles Childrens Chorus and they regulary tour outside the US. This time the tour brought her to South Africa where the choir sang on Table Mountain, at the Voortrekkers Monument in Pretoria as well as along the Garden Route and in Soweto.

Maya and her mum Patricia then went on a private holiday to Botswana and Zambia. Karien organised for her to meet up with the Queen of the local Toka Leya tribe again, and they visited the Victoria Falls together.

“I will never forget her kindness when we first met”, said Maya. “And for her to take the time to meet up with me again in Livingstone was just so cool” said the excited teenager.



  1. What a special memory for such a young girl ! Who wouldn’t be impressed to be treated this way??! The great thing about this happening to a girl her age is that she has a whole life before her to do something with her experience of Zambia and its people. More understanding between cultures is one of the things that are addressed here, but it might not end there for Maya ( and the people around her, like her mother and Maya’s friends at home!)
    Very encouraging for anyone to read about this.. How I love this kind of positive news..!! Thank you.

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