Friday, December 5, 2014

Habari Tanzania

I’m here! After nearly an entire year of talking about it, I’m finally here in Arusha, Tanzania living in the Pamoja headquarters. Today is my second full day at Pamoja and I am still trying to fight off jetlag from a 24 hour flight. Other than extreme sleepiness around 3-6pm, I am doing extremely well and the Pamoja staff have been so welcoming!

I didn’t realize what a beautiful country I would find myself in. I woke up the morning of the 4th to find myself in something like a jungle. I’m ashamed to admit that I don’t know very much about Africa other than what I’ve seen on National Geographic, Lion King, and picture books, so I was expecting to see rolling plains of dry grass, a big blue sky, and those iconic African trees here and there. But I completely forgot that I was living right at the base of Mount Meru and Mount Kilimanjaro, two of the tallest mountains in Africa- which make for much cooler weather.

banana trees on my way to the main area of campus
view outside my apartment
Living on the Pamoja campus feels like living in a botanical garden, but no one is going to tell me that I can’t climb trees (without good reason), or that I need to stay off the grass and mulch. There are no fences or hedges to keep me from smelling the flowers or eating the fruit. They have plumeria flowers, poinsettia trees, coffee plants, SO MANY bananas, papayas, almonds, avocados, hibiscus flowers, etc. 

mt. meru is behind there somewhere
banana trees
plumeria- the same flowers in Hawaii!
It’s also nice living in my own apartment for the first time in a while. While it is different from what I’m used to, the living arrangements (no AC, limited internet, finicky showers etc) aren’t so different from LAUP. Apparently my triplex used to be a medical center during world war II! I enjoy waking up earlier in the morning, reading, drinking some tea, and then going down to the Fesers for breakfast. 

I have my own vintage skeleton key

My new best friend Raja- a mixed german shepherd puppy

offices where I will be working
Overall, I really like it here so far! Everything smells like rain and the earth- the fresh air is a great change from the smog in Los Angeles. There are some things that I miss about LA, such as Jeremy, friends, family, high speed internet etc., but I think it’s going to be an awesome 6 months ☺


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