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Tanzania (October 17, 2001)

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Tanzania is where our African Safari is going to take place. I am very excited about it. Unfortunately we came a day and a half late (luckily we left Mauritius two days early). Our original flight to Tanzania was cancelled, so we had to arrange for a flight into Kenya, which (unfortunately) left the day after. So we flew into Kenya and spent the night there. Then we took another plane to Kilimanjaro (a city in Tanzania) when the next incident happened. After the plane took off the crew told us that they had, with no good reason, decided to go to Dar Es Salaam (another city in Tanz.). So we had to get another plane to Kilimanjaro. All that really upset me because everything happened for no good reason at all.

The day after we arrived in Kilimanjaro we went to the Meserani Snake Park. Of course, the thing the owners had to put in front was a picture of a cut open Python with a partially digested person inside (and not a small boy--it was a fully grown man inside of it!). Yuk. Then we passed a whole bunch of snakes chasing mice (or more trying to escape their prison cubicles with the mice running back and forth along the small window every time the snake moved).

We also went to the Arusha National Park, which is sort of like the Yellowstone National Park. We saw warthogs, giraffes, Colobus monkeys, giraffes, Black-faced monkeys, giraffes, black velvet monkeys, giraffes, a Hippopotamus, Zebra, giraffes, Waterbuck, giraffes, Bushbuck, and a few more giraffes. The road was very rocky and was not paved. It made me feel sick and I hated it!

Just as a note, my birthday is in two weeks, which means that I am going to turn 11 while on Safari!

Tanzania (November 1, 2001)

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It’s my birthday! I have turned 11 in Tanzania, and most other people don’t get to do that (except for Tanzanian kids, of course).

Most people who visit Africa want to only see the big things, such as lions, zebra and vultures. They never want to see, or ever even care about the small animals, such as hyrax. Hyraxes are small, furry mammals just a bit larger than a rat. In fact, they are undulates, not rodents, which means that they are more closely related to elephants then they are to mice. Strangely enough, an explorer discovered what he though was an island and was covered with what he thought were hyraxes. He named it Spain, meaning ‘island of the hyrax’. He had explored about three quarters of the ‘island’, and what he didn’t know was that the fourth quarter had a small bit of land connecting to mainland Spain. Also, what he had thought were hyraxes were actually bunny rabbits.

So far on our safari, we have seen guinea fowl, elephants, guinea fowl, lions, guinea fowl, cheetahs, guinea fowl, giraffe, guinea fowl, a leopard, guinea fowl, zebra, guinea fowl, wildebeest, guinea fowl, waterbuck, guinea fowl, bushbuck, guinea fowl, rhinos, guinea fowl, hyraxes, guinea fowl, monkeys (including baboons, blue mechanda, black velvet, and many others), guinea fowl, different birds (including yellow-bellied weavers, white-headed bull weavers, maribu storks, vultures, and others), guinea fowl, hippos, guinea fowl, warthog, and some more guinea fowl. An elephant has charged at us, too. Unfortunately, we are almost done with the safari. I have seen, smelled, touched, heard, and even tasted (I have eaten topi and warthog) some of Africa. I am probably going to want to come back here later.


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