let me first express my apologies for taking so long to update the blog. tanzania has fair to middlin internet connections at all ‘net cafes i’ve been to since i have been here (about 1 1/2 weeks). i will be unable to update the blog until i am in a place where i can get a better connection. so, for the time being please know that i’m not ignoring the email messages all y’all have been sending me (THANK YOU!), it’s just that time is money and when i can only open and read 1 message in 1/2 an hour’s time, i have become very discouraged by the speed of the connections (when the connection stays connected, that is, which is about 1/2 the time) and so have been unable to respond to you guys. believe me when i say i will reply very soon (esp. benn and monica – i am sorry about your news and will write immediately when i get a good connection. i have thoughts to pass on).
and so meanwhile, i have very much enjoyed Zanzibar, the Spice Island (you’d think they know who the Spice Girls are here! but noooooo, they do not! i’m chagrined), so far. i have slaughtered no less than 1,000,000 potentially malaria-carrying mosquitos in my hotel room and beyond, ruthlessly and without remorse. i have also had the good fortune to have befriended a real, live Maasai guy named Chipa Chipa. his job is security guard at my hotel. because he is from the Maasai tribe, he is (supposedly) of fearsome warrior stock and not to be messed with. Chipa Chipa carries a big stick and wears the traditional drapey scarf/sarong thing and lots of jangley jewelry every day. his skin is a beautiful blue-black and his smile shines with perfect rows of perfectly white teeth. he smiles a lot and his English is good. despite his affability, i would NOT wish his wrath upon me. i do not doubt that with a diet (according to the literature - he has not confirmed this to me) of cows blood and milk, he could take your humble narrator down in about a nano-second. i try to stay on his good side. he and his brothers/cousins/sisters here in Nungwi Beach will perform a traditional dance ceremony down the road from my hotel this Sunday. i will try to arrange to see this, unless i am in the middle of the Serengetti on safari at the time.
at any rate, i am constantly working on writing in my paper journals and hope to condense and upload the juicy bits onto this blog very soon. send in the authorities if you do not hear anything from me by September 1. at that point, one may assume that i have been devoured by lions out on the plains…