January 16th, 2003
Saw Two Towers at 3:00. Traffic on way home nuts due to DSF. Left earlier than planned since worried about traffic. Maktoum Bridge closed for opening ceremonies. Fortunately, traffic light on roads to airport.
Flight late by 25 min due to Royal Brunei being slow out the gate. Mostly smooth flight. Kenya Air v. nice. Steward's name was Elvis.
Sunrise from plane v. beautiful. Also good view Kilimanjaro.
Jomo Kenyatta Airport lil old looking, but cozy. Met when through customs, baggage, etc. V. nice man. Met with shuttle for Arusha. Turned out to be just shuttle to place where met other shuttle, to Arusha. V. small van, but only total five passengers incl. us. Late arrival of van due to Nairobi traffic.
Kenya countryside trees, fields, villages. V. beautiful.
Road v. bumpy, handwriting atrocious.
Cows on road, v. big horns. Also goats.
Anthills throughout countryside. Some over five feet tall. Also many bars in villages. Advertising Tusker, local beer.
Had to pay more at border than been told. Had to pay more at airport, too. Cash going fast.
Tanzania countryside v. beautiful. Many trees, surprising mountains. Soil here is redder, must have much clay.
Have seen Muslim, Xian, J.W. religious facilities. Many schools, all look small. Traffic v. light. Many birds.
Spotted Mt. Meru. Kili feels shy during day, usually only visible early morning, sometimes late afternoon.
Speedbumps in villages. Also some police checkpoints.
Met guide, Adam, at Arusha. Brief briefing w/agency, then on road.
Lunch enroute - boxed - at curio shop. V. friendly kitty.
Adam full of facts about Tanzania. Tour guides have great education.
Paved road ended. Gravel road v. bumpy. Many storks & cranes.
Now in Rift Valley. More vegetation - lush!
Into Lake Manyara Park for 1st game drive.
Standing up in landrover, barefoot, camera out, watching scenery & animals - FUN!
First biggie was elephants. Then big troop of baboons. Guinea fowl, warthogs (including mama and babies), impalas, giraffes, cape buffalo, many flamingos from distance, lavender-bellied roller (bird). Roads muddy in spots from recent hvy rains.
Pit stop when leaving park made entertaining by baboons on roof.
Drive up Rift Valley wall v. bumpy, but spectacular!
Kirurumu Tented Lodge. Nice, but doesn't take visa - been told didn't need cash! Meals included in package, but drinks (including water) at lodges not. Jim v. worried about money.
Dinner good, then bed. Tents on permanent platform, including private toilet & shower. V. nice tent! All tents here named for regional animals. Ours was osprey.