Karibu! Follow my adventures this summer with Duke Engage and the EWH Summer Institute in Tanzania!

Monday, July 2, 2012

Back to School

Safari was awesome! We got to see some of Earth's most incredible creatures in their natural habitat... zebras, giraffes, rhinos, hippos, flamingos, wildebeest, hyenas, elephants, water buffalo, monkeys, and lions! And besides that, the multiple panoramic views that accompanied our trip were absolutely breathtaking.
On Saturday, we left from home at 8 am and went to Lake Manyara National Park. After the park we went to a shop near Lake Manyara for souvenirs and got to test our haggling skills. I bought an oil painting of hornbills (like Zazu in The Lion King) for Tsh 10,000 when the salesmen had originally told me it would cost Tsh 40,000.
On Saturday night we stayed in what we were told would be a "hotel"... but what was actually a few buildings for eating and bathrooms with rows of tents behind them. We split up two to a tent and did our best to stay warm through the cold African winter's night. The best thing about this hotel was that it was situated high up on a mountain, which gave us an incredible view of the valley below and the mountains beyond. Absolutely incredible. We all sat and stared at it for hours. I took a lot of pictures, but my camera certainly couldn't do justice to the depth and richness of the scene.
The next morning we woke up at 6 am for breakfast and headed to Ngorongoro Crater. Here we encountered 4 of the "Big 5" (elephants, lions, buffalo, rhinos, leopards) and got amazing views of many other creatures as well.

Also I forgot to mention earlier... last Friday we had our first visit to Mt. Meru Hospital to start fixing equipment. We started working around 9 am and by lunchtime we had fixed several oxygen concentrators, a surgical lamp, a bed, several blood pressure cuffs, and a couple wheelchairs. We all certainly enjoyed ourselves and loved knowing that we really can make a difference for these hospitals. At one point I was working on a wheelchair with some other students, and as soon as we had finished a nurse came to immediately return it to the medical floor. I really liked getting to see something I had worked on go straight back into use.

In other news, I have gotten my hair done in twists with extensions! It was quite the process. For each twist, the hairdresser took just a tiny bit of my hair and wound some extension around it at the root. Then she split that into two pieces and twisted them around each other all the way to the end. Her fingers moved to quickly that I was literally in awe (she laughed at how amazed I was). My whole head ended up taking 6 hours to do. Yep... SIX. HOURS. It was certainly worth the time... I really like it like this and it doesn't need to be washed as often as my natural hair (which is pretty nice when you're showering with a bucket). Don't get me wrong, there are actually some things about the bucket shower that I prefer to head showers (I use so much less water!), but washing my hair is kinda difficult.

I promise I'll upload pictures at some point...


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