28th October 2010
We continue travelling through the Rungwe district with its tea plantations and banana forrests towards Iringa.
To do some shopping, we simply have to stop the bus, and all the traders come to us.
Women rush across the road, offering bananas, mangoes, pineapples and a fruit I name a passionate guava.
They carry their offerings in woven plates on their heads. It looks as if every woman is wearing a fancy outfit with her colourful dress.
Nobody ever seems to have told African women that they are meant to bug-proof themselves by wearing drab, neutral colours. (To be fair, we are too high up in the mountains for mosquitoes, but clothes are equall colourful in Malaria areas.)
I am looking forward to buying myself a colourful outfit once we have time for a leisurely stroll – but this will probably have to wait until Zanzibar now...
The landscape changes and becomes more European. We pass through acres and acres of pine forrest that seem to be managed commercially because we see fields were all the trees have been cutv down, followed by young pine trees...
The further up we travel, the more Northern European the landscape becomes.
Ahead is a sign „Old farm house“ where we are camping for the night.
The chalets are built in the African style, but once we go for a walk, we might as well be taking a stroll in the English countryside on an early summer afternoon.
We walk past an area where flowers like carnations are grown for the European market and around two ponds that are surrounded by green.
I keep expecting an animal crossing our path that reminds me that I am in Tanzania rather than in England (maybe a croc rearing its head in the pond), but everything maintains the European illusion.
AH does not like to stick to the path and prefers to rely on his compass, so we find ourselves walking back on dirt tracks and through dried out grass, just as we might see in England after a draught.
Only occasionally do we come across plants and trees that are too exotic to fit into an English landscape. (AH picks up round fruit with a hardened skin. They look like leather balls.)