And So Begins Week Four.

Habari, Je Hamjambo


How does one begin a blog update for a week that involved a beaut workshop day, where the students were saw piercing backwards to make latches for cuffs, like 3 weeks before they had never seen a piercing saw, especially with a 3/0 blade, they continue to astound me. Tuesday, a 5am start for a false start, which involved hours getting documents, signed and stamped (40km apart) that proved to be irrevelent, continues further down. The same day spending $USD370.00 for 2 one way airfares to Dar es Salaam, arising at 4-30am Wednesday to meet the shuttle at 5-45am which arrived 35 minutes later. Typical local flight of 1 hour and 10 minutes with snacks arrived in the capital around 9am and cabbed it to town ($1-50) to meet the customs agent, Clemence Francis, a lovely young man.

I soon learned that there had been a multitude of The Goons type of errors and I was being hit for $USD600ish for duty and tax. This triggered an event, which caused my currency card to be blocked for 6 days. Following this, no tools, yet, and 12-½ hour bus trip home on Thursday, which explain the plethora of images and nostalgia for, as you will see from the images:


 I love a sunburnt country,

A land of sweeping plains,

Of ragged mountain ranges,

Of droughts and flooding rains.

I love her far horizons,

I love her jewel-sea,

Her beauty and her terror

The wide brown land for me!

My Country - Poem by Dorothea Mackellar


The images include the hotel room I stayed in in Dar es Salaam, $USD20 per night, the hotel was next to the bus station and I did a bit of light drawing to emphasise the frenetic nature of the place. Tanzania decide to solve the high accident rate of coaches, they banned them from driving at night and speed limited them to 50km, this is why it took a whole day 6am - 6-30pm to travel 650km. Also, it means that some 300+ coaches are trying to board their passengers and leave, all within minutes, frenetic but not chaotic.


There are images of proper geckos, none with pink eyes. It was interesting observing their transparency using the flash.


And, an image of a rather smart South African 2012 Chardonnay which, for $USD8.00 I have a mediumish glass each evening.


I needed red meat, so today I had some Maasai cattle steak, not eye fillet but was okay.


Unfortunately my first glimpse of Kilimanjaro was it shrouded in mist in the late afternoon.

Friday was studio day with 7 students no-one bothered to tell them it was a public holiday, quiet weekend with a trip to Usa markets with my young mate Ima, a street smart young man who aspires to follow in the footprints of Mr Bean, looks like an acting school is also on the cards along with fashion, singing, music and suchlike holistic type culture and art.

It was interesting seeing the mountains of clothing and shoes at the Usa River Saturday markets, which mostly appeared to come from overseas charity bins.


Then the head cold/flu hit and I got sooky.


It was wonderful to be accepted as a teacher of jewellery as part of an extra curricular activity at Arusha’s largest International School. This will begin in mid-January 2017 and will provide necessary funding for the jewellery school as there is surfaced a demand for engagement/wedding rings which we can sell for up to $USD300.00. I’m also looking to start accessing some of the terrific stones her in Tanzania, including Tanzanite.


Off to the Cultural Heritage Art Museum with the students on Thursday, then the Tanz Hand markets with all that has been produced in the last three weeks.


Just about wilting folks, so with these few words and a tinge of regret, I’m off to bed.


Kwaheri Ya Kuonana, Asante Na Wewe Ubaki Salama


Babu Chris