Hey all! It's been a while again, but I think posting once a week or so will be about as often as I can manage. If that. But there's only so much you guys want to read about me anyway, I'm sure.
I'm having a really good time right now! I'm staying on Zanzibar for the weekend - an island off the coast of Tanzania which is well known for it's beautiful beaches, and coral reefs and that sort of thing. It's very relaxing. In fact, if anyone needs a good honeymoon destination, I found it.
Here's my day so far: slept in, had some bread and fruit for breakfast and went swimming in the Indian Ocean. We (Steve and I) had to dodge around the local women who were chasing fish into a huge net. We didn't have to worry about the Dhow fishing boats today, cause they tend to leave earlier in the morning. They dotted the water further out though. I'm hoping to take a ride in one at least once before I leave the coast. At about noon we went for lunch - rice and beans and fish for the equivalent of about 80 cents. When it got hot (that is, hotter than we could really deal with) we went inside to use the internet. Then we'll go swim some more, hang out on the beach and go for a beer at the local bar. Tomorrow we are planning to go snorkeling.
Last weekend I went on Safari in Arusha with a group of characters who are living there teaching English, friends of my former workmate Madeleine. There were 7 of us, all late teens and early 20s and we thoroughly enjoyed ourselves.
In Swahili, the word Safari means "travel" or ""trip". More general than the common meaning of a trek through a national park where we get to encounter exotic wildlife. We participated in the latter, though I suppose we were all msafari (travelers) as well.
We spent two days in the Serengeti and on in Ngorogoro Crater, a huge area of land protected by crater walls as well as the Tanzanian government. We drove around in a huge jeep with seven seats and a roof you could raiseThe driver was also a guide and very knowledgeable about Tanzanian wildlife. We saw Zabras, giraffes, hippos, elephants, alligators, baboons, many kinds of antelopes, buffalo, lions, warthogs, a cheeta and a leopard (very rare apparently. Lucky us!). And a large variety of strange birds. Pictures will explain them better than I will, but unfortunately I will have to wait for the others to send me theirs, as I still have no camera. I intend to rectify that soon.
At night we camped in park campgrounds and watched the sun rise and set over the plains. We had a variety of wild animals visit our camp including a lion and a hyena on the first night, looking for hunting, but unable to see us in our tents (thank goodness!) and an elephant and a herd of buffalo on the second night. And always these enormous birds would hang around the camp looking for garbage. They were up to our chins standing with huge beaks and enormous black wingspans. Apparently they don't attack humans usually though. I don't think much of my chances against one of them. Or three.
If anything, the weekend ended too quickly, but in is close to $150 a day to visit the parks. I did get to spend some time in the village they teach in this last week and visit a couple of schools for the day, which was pretty cool. I also visited the UN International Criminal Tribunal for Rwanda at the Arusha Conference Centre. Also very interesting, though most of the exciting stuff happened in a closed trial.
I got to bond a lot with the gang in Arusha and was sorry to leave. I'm hoping to stay in touch with all of them.
Well, that's all I have for now. I hope you all have a wonderful Easter weekend. I'll be missing Turkey and Easter egg hunts, so please eat some chocolate for me. And Turkey. Just generally eat a lot.
Till next time!
PS. Other pictures (Kilimanjaro, etc) are up on Facebook and I will try to get them onto my blog next internet venture. Should be this coming week. Sorry it's taking so long!