17 July 2013 – Day 24
It was “morridge” for breakfast – our camping version of porridge made with muesli and milk powder rather than porridge oats. It was a welcome late start for us, with a trip to see the snakes that Snake Park camp is named after. In enclosures not very far from where we had pitched our tents was a large collection of local wildlife, mostly snakes but including crocodiles and owls too. It was only as we read the information on each of the local snakes that we started to really appreciate how many dangerous creatures we were sharing our homes with. A mental note was taken by many to double check our tent doors were always shut. We had (luckily) missed out on the snake feeding the day before as we had been in the Serengeti, but those who stayed behind reported that it was fairly gruesome – they fed the snakes live rabbits. After we got a chance to hold some of the snakes and (baby) crocodiles, we headed back to the truck to head off for our next destination, Marangu.
Marangu is in the foothills of Kilimanjaro. When we arrived it was still early afternoon. There were reports that that you could see Kilimanjaro from the campsite bar so we rushed off to see it. There were quite a few photos taken until someone pointed out that it probably wasn’t Kilimanjaro after all… So we were never quite sure if we got to see it or not.
It was a beautiful evening so we grabbed a couple of drinks and sat outside. At this point I was refusing to use the Internet unless it was free (my resolve weakened later) but a few people bought WiFi vouchers. After diner we stayed up a bit longer to continue to get to know our new passengers. Milla provided us with excellent cheesy music to sing along to, which divided the group somewhat. Eventually we went to bed for an extended sleep as we had a free day the next day.
18 July 2013 – Day 25
Finally, time for a lie-in – except that I found I couldn’t stay asleep beyond 7am now anyway due to the shift in my body clock. Despite the fact that there were activities on offer, I decided that I’d stay behind at the camp to chill. We ended up watching Django Unchained up on the truck beach and heading to the bar later to relax. When you’re on the go all the time, it’s nice to just stop and take a break every now and then.
19 July 2013 – Day 26
We had a long drive day. We were now heading towards the coast to catch the ferry to Zanzibar. In the morning, it was my cook groups’s turn to buy food for our meal the next day. We stopped at a roadside market before leaving Marangu – this was our first try at market shopping in Africa because up until this point we had been to supermarkets. We combined our money with the cook group for that night so that we could buy a treat – goat. They were making a vegetarian meal and so didn’t need so much money. We managed to find potatoes eventually and between the six of us we bought out the whole vegetable stall. Feeding 24 people is no small task, after all. After buying out supplies we jumped back in the truck and set off towards the coast.
20 July 2013 – Day 27
Today was the day we were off to Dar es Salaam, the port on the Indian Ocean where we could catch the ferry the next day. The weather had started to seriously heat up the closer to the coast we got. The nights being cold, this shift in temperature was noted by all. I had certainly not dressed for the stifling heat. This would have been fine normally – with the canvas sides up and the truck rolling along we usually got a good breeze even if we got dusty. However, the traffic in Dar es Salaam was really bad, meaning we got stuck on the main road and we we had no way of cooling down other than to break open the eski and pass the time by having a few drinks. Before entering Dar, Joe and Kyle had told us to keep an eye out of the sides for thieves, who would likely try and steal anything that wasn’t screwed on to the truck while stationary in the traffic. At first our only visitors were vendors trying to sell us fizzy drinks and a man trying to sell us machetes, but soon enough we heard that someone had managed to take the oil stick.
We arrived at our beachside camp in Dar and after setting up our tents (some members of the group struggling due to the amount of alcohol consumed during the traffic jam…) we jumped into the sea for a bit until I had to go off and cook our goat stew & mash potatoes. It seemed to go down well and we all headed to bed fairly early. We would have an early start to catch our ferry to
(My camera was out of battery at this point so thanks to Drou & Mandi for the photos!)