Saturday, July 10, 2010

"Peace up, A-town down"

car ride-safety first!
our farewell dinner!
Our sweet babies
contemplating putting him in the suitcase

So we got back to the house around 6pm from the safari and we were incredibly dirty (you wouldn’t think so given that we sat in a car for 3 days but I have never been so gross in my whole life). So we both showered and went ahead and packed because we were leaving so early the next day and didn’t want to have to do it in the morning. There was also a new volunteer there from Florida who was going to join us on our outing in Arusha. We were going to eat at the Blue Herron (finally). I don’t know that it was ever expressed but we had tried 4 times before to eat there (supposedly the best Italian food in Arusha) but it had been closed every time. Ilse has bad luck when it comes to places being open when she wants to go. So in typical fashion it was closed when we got there. Almas picked us up and it was Rachel, me, Ilse, Tanya, Renate, and Shea going with us so we rode with 2 people in the front seat and 4 in the back. Not exactly safe riding but it’s not like we ever wore seatbelts anyway. Don’t get me wrong either, I am as safety conscious as the next person but seatbelts are hard to come by in Tanzania apparently. Anyway, so we decided instead to go to Pepe’s (happens to also be Italian food) and randomly it has an Indian menu as well so I had some really awesome chicken masala. It was quite a lovely dinner and Almas stayed and ate with us. From there we went to Via Via for our last ‘night out’. It was already really crowded when we got there and on Thursday nights they have a live band and then after the band they have a dj that plays outside with this dance floor at the bottom of an amphitheater. Yes, it was as strange as it sounds. Rachel and Shea were pretty tired so they decided to get a taxi home early (1130pm) but given that it was the last night there I was completely up for staying out later. Once the dj started outside that’s where everyone was congregated and Ilse met up with a Dutch guy that she had met before and so Tanya, Renate, and I were pretty much on the dance floor for the next 3 hours. Things don’t close very early so we stayed until 330am when we were all exhausted and there were still a pretty good number of people there after we left. Almas drove us home and I think we all went to bed around 4am.

The next morning 7am came very early. I showered and worked on getting all the pictures that I wanted from Ilse’s computer and visa versa. Almas had also made her a mix cd of all the songs that we always listened to in the car rides between Usa and Arusha so I got a copy of that as well. It was our special “Africa mix”. While I was doing that Rachel was downstairs taking some more pictures of the kids and she brought Happy upstairs to hang out with us before we left. I went downstairs and got Selemani and brought him upstairs as well. We took pictures and I gave him some food but before we knew it, it was time to go. We had someone from ADRA coming to take us to the airport. I had said that I wasn’t going to cry but as soon as I got downstairs and had to put Selemani in his chair to eat I was already getting teary eyed. Lazaro was sitting right next to him and I said bye to him and said that I was going on the airplane and not coming back for a while and he was like airplane? Ok bye. Then I told him to be sweet to Selemani and to make sure he was ok, then Lazaro looked at Sele and said “Sele, tell Kimba bye.” So at that point I pretty much lost it and started crying. I still had to say bye to all my other babies so I made it through all but Amina because she was sitting across the room. I also gave Rhoda a hug and we both started crying, and she doesn’t even speak English and we have never actually had a conversation but it was still so sweet and she was probably the nicest nanny to me the whole time. At that point Rachel and I were both pretty much bawling and had to leave the room. We said goodbye to the laundry lady and to Ellie (another volunteer), and then we went to gather our things to put in the car. Renate and Ilse helped us with our bags to the car and we were both pretty much still crying at that point. It’s really hard saying goodbye to people and I will certainly admit that I am not good at it. I have never had to say goodbye to people essentially for forever as far as I know. We both were pretty much silent on the way to the airport besides some small talk with the driver. On to Zanzibar we went…

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