Well everyone. I’m now finally able to take the time to talk about the latter part of my trip and whats next. I am back home in the US now enjoying the luxuries of first world life, although I’d kill to be back in Africa any day. No I didn’t hardly ever have a hot shower, and I’m not really going to explain how the bathrooms were at times, but I was seeing new things and having new experiences that were so incredibly perfect. Nothing I can say can really show the true story of how my time in Africa was and how being in Kenya and Tanzania felt like.

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Saying goodbye to Dar es Salaam

 

To update, I traveled with my dear friend Liv through Tanzania, starting from Nairobi to Arusha, then from Arusha to Dar es Salaam before taking a ferry to Zanzibar. Tanzania, in comparison to Kenya, was a lot less in your face and more chilled out. It was less busy and you didn’t feel like people were always coming up to you asking for things there. It may very well have had to do with my personal experience but Tanzania had a much more relaxed vibe than Kenya which in some way was a relief, and in another I missed the crazy business and intensity of Nairobi. It was exhilarating to be on a busy crowded street knowing you needed to get on a Matatu to Kamangu, and you had no idea whatsoever what Kamangu looked like or where it was, and you didn’t want to pay more than 50 kenyan shillings for the ride, and you never really know if the matatu you were being ushered on was the right one as it would just be a bunch of kenyan guys yelling Kiswahili at you and such. It always seemed to work out though, it always works out.

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Liv chilling on a boat at low tide in Zanzibar

Zanzibar was an absolute paradise Island. I don’t know how else to explain Zanzibar other than tropical paradise. From my experiences in life to date it was the closest thing I have ever been to Paradise, but it was primarily because of the experiences I had.

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I mean look at this place!

 

When we arrived in the beautiful Stone Town of Zanz we set off to the east coast for a village called Paje which pretty much became my home for two weeks. I ended up staying in Zanzibar for longer than I planned… what can I say? Why not? Anyhow, me and Liv arrived at the hostel where in the rooms the floor was sand. Never have I experienced something like this and we were so excited.

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Walking through the streets of Stone Town.. Look carefully at the pic

A summary of my two weeks was basically, meeting friends, going on adventures, laying on the beach, playing volleyball a lot, swimming, and partying a little.. It was a dream. I miss the coconuts dearly that I would pay about 30 cents for to refresh myself after a long day of laying out in the sun. But seriously I highly recommend anyone to travel to Zanzibar. Its a really cool place and a lot larger of an island than some may realize with over 1.5 million locals living there!

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Liv and Byron (a friend from South Africa) enjoying the fire on the beach

 

So me and Liv quickly made many great friends in Zanzibar and ended up staying in a locals rent house in the village of Paje which was an interesting experience but the reason we did this is because it only cost us $9 US a night opposed to the $20 a night rate most hostels were giving. While staying at the house we would hang out at a place called Jambo Beach Bungalows which was a really cool place with a bar that was right on the beach. We made most of our friends there and it was only about a 5 minute walk from our house in the village.

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Our house in the village was so nice!

 

After eight days in the house I ended up moving to Jambo to snag a room that was situated above the bar which was on the beach for the next five days. It was probably the coolest room I will have ever stayed in in my entire life. I found this room due to making great friends with two dutch guys name Coin and Cash, who had booked the rarely rented out room well before the trip. Okay their names were Koen and Gijs, but their names were really hard to say and they sound like Coin and Cash so thats what we called them. They were leaving and I wasn’t so I talked to management and snagged this loft room above a bar all to myself. Liv decided to go back to Tanzania so I was solo again for a while until we would meet in Nairobi before our flights home. Its hard to travel with a friend for two weeks and then say goodbye. You become so close to them and they are with you almost every second of the day and then just like that they are gone.

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Friends Gijs and Koen on our way out to an Island.

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So basically I’m standing in the water from this view and the triangle above the bar was my window.

I think thats what makes traveling so great is the loss you encounter while traveling. You meet so many great people and have the experiences of a lifetime and make best friends, then they leave, and you leave and its over. Then it just becomes a distant memory and you wish you would’ve taken more pictures to remember the occasions. This may seem sad but its so true with traveling. The reason why this is great is because this great loss yields incredibly amazing experiences. The sadness of the loss shows you how perfect things actually were and how happy you were at the time. I consider myself fortunate to go through these emotions where I miss people who I only knew for 3 days as if I knew them for 3 years. Life goes on and theres always the hope and sometimes promise of seeing them again. It was hard to stay in Zanzibar so long because I met so many great friends who I had to see come and go during my time. I also had to leave the connection I made with that place and the friends I met towards the end of my trip.

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Me and my best Maasai friend Christopher

 

I made friends with a Maasai man named Christopher and we would run around parties and laugh at each other and jump around. I witnessed the Maasai perform a goat slaughter then proceed to drink the goats blood and cook it right on the beach. It wasn’t the best of meats. I also ended up playing a soccer game on a local sand court with local maasai people while me and a German named Andi were the only mzungus(white people) playing. I stand up paddle boarded through mangoes, snorkeled out in the reef, went on runs and adventure. It really was the coolest experience.

 

Me, Liv, Coin and Cash

Me, Liv, Coin and Cash about to snorkel

 

Anyhow, I am home now, and my mindset is much different. I was planning to go back to school this fall of 2015 but can now say Africa has inspired me not to. Im ready to leave Louisiana for good. I also am not sure what I want out of life so for now, while I am young, and maybe a little crazy, with a completely different and new mindset, I am going to get out there and live life to the fullest. Pretty soon Ill update my blog with whats next but I couldn’t be more excited.

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Thanks for listening guys 🙂

-ColeB