Just back from Zanzibar. I know I was planning to go to Mombasa, but I figure by the weekend I'll be living there, so why bother. Plus, I had some friends going there so, why not pop off to paradise for the weekend? Zanzibar is an absolute dream. Perfect beaches, great history, lots of cool things to do and see.
The town itself reminds me of a cross between an old, stately Mexican city and Venice. This is because while there are many main streets around Stone Town, most of the residential area is little alleyway streets. With carved doors, elaborate balconies and winding paths, it makes for a pretty picturesque neighborhood. At night, in the Forodhoni Gardens, there's a big street food fair where everyone in town comes and hangs out in a big park. I had some good chapati, some interesting Zanzibar style pizza and even Baracuda!! Besides being semi-stalked by a crazy old Nigerian refugee, it was a pretty nice night.
Because it's right on some very big trade routes, the culture in Zanzibar is a cross between African and Arabian. On the mainland, most of the Arabs and the Africans are pretty separate, but in Zanzibar its a fun mix. Beautiful African skin and exotic Arabian clothes and makeup.
Zanzibar is much more touristy than Tanga (it doesn't take much) so there was LOTS of shopping to do. Even some places that accept credit cards!! All this means I'm just near done with Christmas shopping, and a little more too...
Now that I'm back on the mainland, I have real things to worry about. Mohammed, the guy in charge here is basically a lying, cheating, dishonest man and everyone can't wait to get out of here. Jenny confronted him while we were gone and it got ugly. He threatened to call the police, she cried, it's really no good at all. Lara and Cat are gone on Wednesday, I'll probably head up to Mombasa at the end of the week, as soon as I can get in touch with the (much more stable) coordinator up there.
It's prety disheartening the whole thing. Mohammed closed down the school so now I don't even get to say goodbye to most of my students. After all my hard work, I deserve that. They deserve it. I think I'm going to storm the villages and track them down, just for pictures. I'll miss my kids lots and lots.