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KJ’s Travel Diary

Sunday, 25 Sep 2011

Location: Moshi, Tanzania

MapHi All
We’ve had a few issues with power outages and internet problems in the last few days. But today, all is well… for now. It’s a quieter day, before our big travel day to Moshi to deliver 31 boxes of books and school supplies to a school there. Should be fun, if the bus we are taking can hold all the books and doesn’t break down, so we won’t have to transfer them… big “if’s” here in Africa.  Always an adventure.
Well, the crate has been officially handed over to the “Kahama District Council”. They had a big ceremony yesterday. I got to be one of the official photographers, along with two people from the media. Brenda got to make a speech and she did great. There was entertainment in the form of drumming and traditional dancing/acrobatics/slapstick… quite good actually.
We’ve also been able to visit and give gifts to the Faraja orphanage and deliver some of the totes that families in Canada made for their World Vision sponsor children here.
I have also been able to give one of my two cardiology presentations (Intro to ECGs) to the medical staff, at their clinical meeting. It went well, other than the fact that the kindly donated ECG machine from Canada was damaged on the way here and didn’t work. But I was able to explain and to show them how to hook it up. They seemed interested. Hopefully, we can get them a functioning ECG machine soon.
I am excited about seeing more of the countryside and after we do our visiting there, I get to do a 3-day safari in the Ngorongoro Crater and the Serengeti National Park! I can’t wait to see some wildlife. All I have seen so far are mosquitos, cats, and geckos… and maybe a few bigger bugs, some of whom I have squashed dead…. not too exciting.
I have now tried Ugali. It’s a corn-flour based, thick paste of a porridge that you eat with sauces. As staples go, it’s pretty bland, but filling.

Two days later…
Well the big travel day is behind us. We expected about a 10 hour ride to go 650 kms…. We were 7 hours wrong…. 17 hours on a bus with one 20 minute scheduled stop is too long!! Thank heavens for flat tires and running out of fuel. Too bad I developed a case of the trots during the last seven hours. Brenda made them stop for me once… yes, I was the weak “Muzungu” (white person) who cried “uncle” first, but I was turning green and biting my lip… and a few others were relieved that we stopped, too. Anyway, we made it. And today we drop the books from Holly Cross school in Penticton at St. Timothy’s school in Moshi. And I am feeling better. whew...
Hope you are all well.