Moshi, Tanzania

Its quiet this evening except for the call to prayer drifting across the main high way from the Mosque. Not wanting to take a chance on the power going out again ….

The city/town/area is an interesting blend of rural and modern. According to Wiki, the population is a bit more than 200,000 and the major industry is tourism (can you spell Kilimanjaro? I can’t without the spell checker) followed by agriculture. Coffee and brewing come to mind.

What I really saw as I walked down the road in front of the Guesthouse was power poles and

normal side street

normal side street .

was typical Western houses on both sides of the roads. With the addition of major fencing up to and including cement walls, barbed wire and concertina wire finishing flourishes. There are no open yards and all the gates are chained. Checking to make sure, I had it confirmed that this was not a town in which to walk with bag, purse, pack much less an expensive camera. My long form of explaining why there are no photos of the town.

I walked down the lane, across the main road at the round about and into town in search of snack foods, drinks and an ATM. I found the ATM at a considerable distance. Not an open along the street one but one with an enclosed area and an armed guard outside. For general rounding purposes 10,000 TZS + 4 USD.  Right hand drive cars had me adjusting my walking pattern to what I now think of as the African side of the road to include avoiding the omnipresent ditch on each side. It definitely feels safer to walk facing the traffic.

With rare exception, the men are all western dressed. The women wear dresses and skirts. Only rarely do you see shoulders or upper arms. Not just the Muslim women, but a number of modeled a variety of head coverings. No matter how young, the girls are all in dresses, some of which were long enough to drag on the ground. The adults were all wearing foot gear of one kind or another with flip-flops predominating. Almost 1/2 of the children were barefoot. Obesity is not an issue in this area of Tanzania. Slender to skinny or scrawny is the norm boht in adults and children.

As I looked both north and west I once more had an overwhelming reminder of how easily I get my directions confused in Sub-Saharan Africa. I could see the foothills of Kilimanjaro; it was looking into the sun. Duh, once again I had to remember that mid day shadows go south, not north. Probably along with my common sense.

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