This last blog from East Africa comes to you via a recent conversation with the leader Laurel. The group is too busy having fun to get to the Internet!
Zanzibar has been spectacular. It’s very diverse. There are so many different nationalities and so many influences of food, dress, culture, and language.
We had a really fun day yesterday. From Stone Town, we went on a snorkeling excursion by boat. In addition to checking out the life below the surface, we visited a tortoise sanctuary where all the tortoises are over 100 years old! The water has been absolutely beautiful for swimming, really blue and really warm and delightful. Last night we enjoyed exploring Stone Town itself. We had dinner at a courtyard in the middle of town decorated by lanterns and surrounded by food of all kinds, Indian food, barbecue, pizza, and fresh juices to name a few.
We didn’t know what to expect for the Spice Tour today but we were pleasantly surprised by how much fun we had. A hilarious guide led us through the forest, imitating a British accent and pointing out different spices right on the trees for us to smell: nutmeg, vanilla, lemon grass, jasmine, cinnamon, and cardamom.
In the afternoon, we headed to the beach on the eastern shore. It is HOT. So we wanted to jump right in the water, but the tide was so far out that it wasn’t possible. Within the hour, the tide came in and in the shallow waters it was like a huge bath tub…the water was actually hot. Nonetheless, we spent the rest of the afternoon swimming. Some students even taught our in-country staff member Jeremiah how to swim. It is his first time to Zanzibar, and he doesn’t have a lot of access to water living in the Kakamega area.
We’re now eating dinner at our hotel, an extremely peaceful place right on the water. Tomorrow is our last full day on the program and we’ll celebrate with a talent show (some students have been rehearsing for 2 weeks!), a final banquet, and some quality time together. We can’t believe the program is coming to a close. We’ll see you all very soon!