Arusha

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Melissa: We had a rare treat on the way to Arusha--a western-style shopping complex with a supermarket. This shopping complex was basically a strip mall similar to any you would find anywhere around America, but it was paradise to us. There was a coffee shop, a bakery, and a giant Shoprite where we picked up snacks and necessities like packets of tissues (used as toilet paper) and wet antiseptic towellettes, more and more valuable to us as three more passengers on the truck (the Australian chef, the Englishman, and the male half of the Australian newlywed couple) came down with the same symptoms as we had.

That night, we stayed at the Snake Park campgrounds outside of Arusha. The facilities included warmish showers (heaven!), actual flush toilets, and a bar. We were still sick and uncomfortable, so we helped with dinner and set up, ate, and hit the tent. I was much worse than Rich, and he sweetly stayed up with me and offered to come with me on my multiple trips to the bathroom to guard me from wildlife.

The next morning, we had a tour of the snake park area of the campgrounds, which is a habitat that houses many, many, many extremely dangerous, poisonous African snakes. There are also injured birds, crocodiles, and tortoises on view. Afterward, we limped back onto the truck for the long ride towards the Serengeti. That night, we stayed at a campground close to the Serengeti, but there were also bungalows to rent for a hefty fee. We decided to pay the surcharge just for the hot shower and ensuite bathroom, as the night before had involved too much waking up abruptly, pulling on warm clothes, unzipping two sets of zippers on the tent, ambling urgently towards the bathrooms, and stumbling back. We also attempted to hand wash some of our clothes and towels in hopes that they would dry overnight.

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