Monthly Archives: August 2011

Karibu Mwanza!

So we have arrived and managed to get our own internet connection within 3 days – pretty impressive in Tanzanian terms! So we can now happily update you on all the new experiences that come with moving here.

Flights were long, but good. Please commend Naomi on an excellent degree of accuracy in packing and weighing the bags. We had an allowance of 6 bags @ 23kgs each (between the 2 of us), 2 of the bags were 23 exactly, 2 were 23.1 and the others 22.8 and 22.9! Dissapointed we had 100g spare but I guess you win some you lose some! Didn’t sleep much on the plane and watched the film ‘Source Code’ which I didn’t really rate so eventually helped me get a bit of sleep. Transfer of plane at Dar es Salaam was better than expected – got my 3 month visa no problems (although the school had a bit of corruption with the guard saying their work permits and visas had not yet arrived so each of the teachers had to pay $50 for a tourist visa when in fact the permits were there)! Bit of a wait for internal flight due to some missing people but wasn’t cancelled so that was a good result! Arrivals lounge at Mwanza airport is pretty much an old cow shed and luggage gets thrown through a gap in the wall for you to find and collect (all 6 cases made it fine you will be pleased to know – even the one from Poundstretcher that needed the last minute repair job – thanks Naomi’s dad!)

Then were taken to our flat in the Isamilo area by bus and lugged the cases up 3 floors of stairs, with a bit of help thankfully. We have since been settling in, going to different places and on tours of the school compounds. During the week, mains electricity has so far been on from about 20:30 – 08/09:00. We are allowed to use the site generator from 19:00 – 22:00 for light and fridges etc but not ovens and water heaters. Equally, we need to boil the water for 5-10 mins (to remove bacteria etc) then put it through our filtration system (to remove sediment and other particulate) before bottling up in fridge for cooling and drinking. Adjusting to these differences and planing ahead has been part of settling in.

Since then, we’ve been to town a few times with varying success (but now have tanzanian mobile phone & mobile internet!) and have visited a selection of restaurants. There are some great curries here and we were treated to a Paneer masala and a sort of butter chicken on our first night with excellent views over the city while the sun set (around 19:00 for anyone’s records). Did fall foul of thinking curries were good when ordering ‘Chips Masala’ thinking I would get a nice plate of chips with a masala dipping sauce, instead had a plate of chips drowned in vinegar watered down ketchup!

Will certainly post more on experiences but for now, a couple of photos so far – 1 of Mt.Kilimanjaro and Mt. Meru from the flight into Dar es Salaam and one from Dancing rocks – a Mwanza viewpoint! Kwa herini (Goodbye to all/with blessings)