What craziness international travel has proven to be to be, admittedly I had not been on an international flight since 1989. Queues, befuddlement passing through screening resulting in the separation of Chris and his wallet, this was sorted fairly easily. In a moment of stress and packing madness, I decided to swap seats on the plane, ended up with THE WORST SEAT possible resulting in 15 ½ hours of extreme discomfort and sleeplessness. Arrived in Doha at 5am Qatar time and walked, and walked and walked and walked past the duty free chocolate shop and stocked up on over-priced Kit Kats for all the children at The Small Things.
On boarding the flight to Kilimanjaro, I was delightedly indulged for the next 5 hours, pure and excessive over-compensation for the Sydney/Doha leg.
Arranged volunteer’s visa easily at the airport, downhill from there as the metal I had donated caused consternation and I spent the next 2 hours with the delightful folk in customs working out duties and taxes. My openness and acceptance of folk made for a lovely experience filled will much laughter and bonhomie, leaving me $USD225.00 lighter. Emmanuel (driver, there are a large number of Emmanuel’s, so I designate them by their role) and Teressa (from TST) were great company through this process.
It was interesting the first trees I sighted on landing were Jacaranda and Poinciana in full bloom.
My first breakfast was very white bread toasted over a gas ring with avocado and mashed banana.
My digs are fairly basic but really comfortable and everyone is so welcoming and supportive.
I am known as Buba Benjamin (father of Benjamin) or Babu Jai (grandfather of Jai) each being the first-born. Generally shortened to Buba.
Will fill you all in on the Arusha Christmas Markets a little later.