Africa Redux: MONKEY!

Ye Olde Photoblogge is what got me into doing travel blogging and for that I am truly grateful.  I am now relocating the contents over here and, in the process, editing, trimming, and adding material that I never did get around to posting.  Seeing how the trip I took to Tanzania in 2009 was one of the most spectacular experiences of my life (so far! ;), I thought I’d start there.

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31 Dec. 2008 

Moshi, Tanzania 

 

New Year’s Eve in Tanzania. Woohoo! What a great way to start the year!

Dario and I arrived on the 30th, so today was our first full day in Africa. We had fun with the wide angle lens on the camera, with Sean taking some pics on the upper story of the hotel. Great view of Kilimanjaro up there.

  On Sean’s recommendation, we paid a very small fee to one of the local guides for a walk through the rice paddies and jungle behind the hotel. There were Colobus monkeys! Our guide, Eliya, is Maasai and lives in Arusha. Fortunately for us, he was in Moshi for a while. He was great! Very friendly, teaching us Swahili words and making sure we found some monkeys. Indeed, he would try get them to move into better positions by rattling a stick in the underbrush and yelling, “MONKEY!”  HI-larious!

Apparently he had done the same for Sean the day before, so it became our war cry on safari when hoping an animal would move into a better position. Fabian, our driver-guide, was a little confused at first. “MONKEY!” we’d yell.  “…Ahh, no, that is a lion.” …Oh, Fabian, what idiots you must think we are.

Hugs and Happy New Year! 

Kilimanjaro peeking through the clouds.

 

Me at Springlands Hotel outside of Sean’s room. Nifty vertical wide angle lens effect, oooOOOoooOOOo!

 

Weaver bird nests at the hotel. I keep forgetting to go back during the morning to get shots of the actual birds. D’oh!

 

Dario with his badass sunglasses. ;)

 

I guess I got one bird after all!

 

Dario takes a pic of Kili from behind the hotel, just before we began our jungle walk.

 

Tracks of the now-defunct railroad, out behind the hotel. Dario thinks railroad tracks and people on bicycles are very “African,” lol.

 

Local kids enjoying a bit of a splash. Most of them were very accommodating about the camera and the 2 goofy tourists, jumping over and over again into the water so I could get action shots. This is not really one of those shots, but it is the best framed and everyone pictured had swimming trunks on (not everyone there did).

 

The local mosque. Fortunately for us, we were on the far side of the hotel from the mosque, giving us some protection from the loudspeaker that called for prayer at a painfully early hour of the day.

 

Papayas!

 

Climbing a large papaya tree. Ooo!  Can I have one?  Mmm, delicious papayas…

 

Kili over the rice paddies. The bird was a bonus.  Looks like an ad for American beer or cigarettes or something.  I almost feel disjointedly patriotic.

 

Eliya, our guide, was a great, friendly fellow. Offered to take our picture a few times.  He liked to say, “Supah, supah!” (super!)  This became one of my favorite pictures of the whole trip.  It is, indeed, supah!

 

I’m having flashbacks to ‘Nam and I’ve never even been there. Quick, someone call for a dustoff!

 

Mmmm! Bananas! So fresh and so delicious!   6 foot, 7 foot, 8 foot bunch!

 

 

Sacred Ibis in the rice paddies. So beautiful. (An egret, too! ;)

 

Wow wow wow. So picturesque, just lovely.

 

Two adorable children who were keeping their mothers company in the rice paddies. Thanks to the mothers who said yes to letting us take photos. They were soooo cute, giggling the whole time.

 

OMGOMG — MONKEY!

 

Black and white colobus monkeys.  There are 3 in the picture.  Can you find ‘em all?  :D

 

SUPER zoom!

 

Eliya, with stick in hand, beating the bushes below the trees: “MONKEY! …MONKEY!”

 

 

 

 

Enormous fig tree (small and warped Dario — wide angle lens), 51 M tall, approximately 180 years old in 2000. Wow!

 

Dario with Eliya. We got to see him with partial Maasai garb later in the evening. Most of the Maasai people who work for Zara don’t wear traditional clothing or jewelry while at work, unless they are working security. I guess there is something rather intimidating about a Maasai warrior in full gear.

 

On Eliya’s suggestion, I took a picture of this bunch of bananas. “Probably tonight’s dinner.” :D

 

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Just so it’s not lost to time and blogshift™, here is a snapshot of some of the original comments.  ;)

 

 

Tomorrow…  SAFARI!!!  :D

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