Monday, August 20, 2007

Part IV (b): Welcome to Moshi, Tanzania

About an hour and a half cramped bus ride (5 people to a 4 person seat) on bumpy roads for 2000-2500 tsh leads you to Moshi, Tanzania…it is a bit less scenic than Arusha, not as luscious green… it reminds me more of a typical American suburb, but the mountains that loom overhead, including Kiliminjaro which I hadn't seen yet due to clouds… wow. Majestic. Moshi is significantly smaller than Arusha in size and population, and Shirley and I were able to explore all of Moshi by foot in the matter of only a couple hours. Moshi is quite a bit hotter than Arusha due to its lower altitude, which is nice in the evening but a bit uncomfortable during the day. Though it is very nice compared to the heat of India.

Arriving in Moshi, I met host mommy, a nice Indian woman with 2 sons studying abroad in America and a 18-year-old daughter that was away in Dar at the time. Her English was not very good, but her smile and warm welcome made me feel right at home. We headed to the Kiliminjaro Christian Medical Center (KCMC), where the wheelchair clinic is located. From there I met Abdullah, the “boss,” a delightful gentleman that has been confined to a wheelchair due to a motor vehicle accident several years back, but has explored with his mind and charming personality what he cannot do on foot. We went to go visit Peter, a local that had been testing the new wheelchair designs, designed for the rugged roads that throw automobile passengers against the roof (and I say this from experience – though the bump on my head serving as proof has since then subsided) never mind allow a person in a wheelchair designed for smooth roads and tile floors to get anywhere.

My trip in Moshi was fairly short as Shirley had planned a Safari for the two of us over the weekend, and then by her beckoning, lack of photographic opportunities (due to most of her work being on the computer), and a “you absolutely have to go to Zanzibar while you’re here,” I headed off to an island off the coast of Tanzania. But before I talk about leapords and paradise, let me tell you a bit about my experiences in Moshi. There is a Moshi Institute of Technology (MIT) which Shirley and I just had to take a picture of...

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