Leaving Dar es Salaam at an early 5am we started the biggest drive of the trip. The roads were actually pretty good quality but just many many km’s to cover. Most of us slept through the morning, then the games of pictionary and travel scrabble broke out to kill the hours. We quickly established who had the best drawing skills in the group, and whose were the worst (no names). The highlight along the way was spotting Mt Kilimanjaro along the way above a field of sunflowers. Nothing but a peak of snow in the distance, which was awesome considering we are in Africa.
Many many many hours later we drove through Arusha then out to the Snake Park, a well known campsite where every overland truck stops before the Serengeti. For so much traffic, you would think the toilet blocks would be a bit better, but then who can complain if you are travelling around in a giant truck on a budget.
All dinner duties were off as a Braai was provided for us and then into the bar. A darts drinking game began and 3 quick games later everyone was nicely drunk and well on their way into the night. The bar stayed open an extra 1 1/2 hours for us, then we sat elsewhere listening to Big Boy’s stories while nodding off and rejoining them part way through. Since we had bar tabs a lot of damage was done to the wallet that night, with 95 shots shared between about 8-9 of us. It all goes to building an orphanage we are told…..
The morning saw many hangovers, with an especially bad one for me. We wandered the free activities at the campsite, namely a Snake Park with all the deadliest snakes in Africa. They are behind glass but still watch you and move towards you if you stare a little too much. They are terrifying.
The other was the Maasi museum, which contains exhibits about the local tribespeople of the area. It was filled with interesting diorama’s of village and cultural life. I was expecting simple photos and maybe a caption. I actually did sneak out for a breather as they started talking about male circumcision and blood-letting of cows for health benefits. Nice little set-up though.
Then we waited around the camp for the Serengeti excursion and decided to change from the 1 to a 2 night excursion, only a few hours before. This bumped the numbers up to 9 which meant 2 vehicles should be sent out but the company doing it was too cheap to do so (due to extra park fees, etc) so we took a vote and reluctantly left Kat behind at camp as we drove off with Laurence our guide towards the Ngorongoro national park.