On a seperate note, I visited Westminster Abbey yesterday and a sign there used the letter 'z' instead of the letter 's' for "No unauthorized Street Vendors". Since when has that been the English convention, not American?
I didn't post it at the time, because I just didn't want to worry anyone and wanted to forget about it, but I was scammed and robbed in Africa, back in Jan. I wrote it up as a warning on my African Volunteer blog - click here.
OK, so I'm almost home, so I'm not showing anyone the really nice photos from now on. So here are some interesting/different pics.
Katherine, Raina, Sarah with the evil Gin that we drunk along with two bottles of Konyagi we drank on the last big night out (nice idea to finish it Mike). Thanks to Raina, Sarah, Chris, Katherine and Mike for lasting the night and joining me in the car park of La Fiesta at 3am. Big thanks to Katherine for stopping that car so we could go home.
Christoff and Maro, the boys from Kijenge Mwanama. Thanks for the back flips Christoff and good luck being president Maro.
Mike fixing the bus/oven with duct tape. The second worse bus trip on our adwenture.
Breakfast on Tiwi Beach (far away inside) near Mombassa. Spring Break 2005!!! - 'You're going to Mombassa'
Da boys on da train to Nairobbery (Nairobi). Kevin with his gangster sign and cheesey grin.
Kevin, Raina and Mike in Kampala after rafting the Nile. Kampala certainly rivals Arusha for comedy shirts. My 'Hit the Road Jack' shirt from Raina (thanks) was given as a bribe (unsuccessfully) to a Kenyan official to get Kevin and I on the roof to take photos of Nairobbery after hours. Mike is pulling his 'We're goin' to Mombassa, yeah!!' face.
My breakfast at Murchinson Falls after chimp tracking and before Nile Cruise. Omlette on the left and Chipati on the right. (If you're reading this, I miss you chipati, please return my calls)
In Kisumu, Kenya, with Kevin putting Keyan Cane into a water bottle, and adding a squirt of ribena (Kevin loves Ribena) just to ensure my last night in Africa is a drunken mess. This was after beers at the beach resort (along with another lost game of pool), a bottle of Safari Gin at the bar across the road which included a free bar fight between a huge guy and a small guy, and then a conversation with a guard named Cameroon who likes the Cameroon soccer team. What a way to go......
"Goodbye Africa. And goodbye Scarecrow, I'll miss you most of all..."
Huge thanks to all the crew in Arusha who made my adwenture and adWenture with a capital W.
Finally, one of my lasting images of Tanzania. The gate to Mama Happy's place. I'll be back one day.
On my first day back from Africa I have spent a lot of (lazy) time thinking about not being in Africa. I missed my friends. I missed the people. I missed the life. I miss the language (although I did 'Pole Sana' a lady who tripped on the tube. And I certainly missed the warmth.
It only hit me, and only ever hits me, after the fact. After I've left. I think is good. I don't spend/waste time somewhere brooding over the fact that it is going to end soon. I just enjoy it and brood later.
So today I drank from the tap of life, ate from the cereal bowl of joy and showered without flip-flops on with serenity. But I missed Africa. I thought about how I've gone and won't be back soon. I really felt that I'd left Africa and it was a long way away.
Then I met Innocent. He serves at the local Marks and Spencer. I nearly walked away, but the name was a give away. I asked him where he came from and he said Uganda. We chatted for only 30 seconds, but as I left he said 'asante, kwa heri' and I said 'tutaonana badaaye'. We both smiled and I walked away. I kept smiling the whole way home.
It made me feel really good because I realised that Africa would be with me wherever I went, and knowing how way leads onto way.... [sigh]
More thanking is required, but thank you to everyone who made my life in Africa possible. Thank you.
I'd love to hear from the crew in Arusha, keep in touch.