Dar es Salaam - I saw the President of Tanzania!
Trip Start May 11, 2008
19Trip End Jul 01, 2008
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Where I stayed
In the city!
We found our hotel with some ease, and by ease I mean lots of backtracking and asking people for directions. The hotel is called the Jambo Inn. Our 3 bed room costs 25,000 shillings which is aroud $22. It is not fancy but it is pretty perfect. For 35,000 we could get ac, but we are fine without. And actually we got back to the hotel just now and they upgraded us to ac because someone wanted our room. Not sure why, not asking questions either. As long as I have a shower, toilet, mosquito net I am happy! Last night we ate at the hotel and, wow, we ate well. We all ordered hamburgers and fries, but also pizza, chicken, garlic bread, cheese bread, and of course the much needed pineapple juice!
Today has been an adventure! Or more appropiately I will say to day has been really strange, and all I know now is that I am exhausted. We started the morning by going to the Karikoo Market which is a produce market and also what we would call a flea market. Piles and piles of stuff. Tons and tons of people. From there we intended to walk to the National Museum which is where Ostro Lopithicus (the oldest human or whatever) is held. However, the day took us in other directions. We were walking toward the museum when we heard drums and flutes, and saw the Tanzanian colors strung everywhere. And then we saw a huge banner outside the park with Nicole Kidman's picture on it. So we asked. "Say No to Violence Against Women!" was the event and it was a rally in support of equality for Tanzanian women. We thought it would be cool to see Nicole Kidman so we asked the guard if we could go in. Anyway to make a long story short. We went it, and found some empty seats next to the red carpet when a police escort showed up with the President of the United Republic of Tanzania. He walked within 5 feet of us. There was a marching band, and parade for the president. We stayed for the event. Several people spoke and the president spoke for about an hour. We found a nice local guy to translate for us. It was really interesting to be part of the whole event. The rest of the day was sort of bizarre. We tried to go several places, including the National Museum, but all of which we closed.
Not sure how I feel about Dar or the day in general. I will be happy to go back to Bagamoyo tomorrow. We have some things we are going to try to do tomorrow, but we'll see if any of it happens.
I guess that will be all for now. More updates about the weekend tomorrow.