Karatu

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karatu2.jpg

Our next stop was more of a layover on our way to Arusha to split up the driving. To make it a little more interesting and keep with our culturally sensitive theme of the trip we had a two hour village hike planned over lunch. Melissa was not feeling well so she decided to opt out of the hike and hang out in the truck for a couple of hours.

On the tour we were showed a local vocational school that a portion of our trip fees are donated to which provides training in woodwork, textiles, and various other skills to local children and adults. The tour was as interesting as you would expect a tour of a relatively empty vocational school to be and afterwards we were invited to hike further up the hills surrounding the school. We hiked for about 30 minutes to small village of huts where some local women had prepared lunch for us. The lunch was one of the best ones yet (and significantly better than the sandwiches we had for lunch 50% of the time). They had prepared about 7 different African staples including lentils, ugali (sort of like stiff mashed potatoes made from corn meal), pumpkin leaves (surprisingly good), chapatti, and beef stew. The food was excellent and for dessert we received an assortment of fruit including the very sweet and local favorites of red bananas.

After lunch we hiked even further up the mountain to see a baobab tree that was once a famous meeting place for locals. The tree itself was worth seeing as they are pretty rare and large enough to be impressive. We spent about a half hour looking down at the surrounding valley and enjoying the weather before heading back down. Afterward we met up with the rest of the truck and made our way towards Arusha.

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