Leaving Tanzania and back to Europe

As we load the car up Andrew reports he has had a visit from the local ranger who tells him he has been reported for off road driving and when we exit the park they will be waiting for us with a fine.

This is upsetting as it is not true , at least not yesterday.

We decide that we will have to squeeze in a visit at the Park Headquaters before André and I fly out of the Seronera airstrip,  to straighten this story out and so that Andrew does not have a problem as he leaves. We are concentrating on what we will say and then with still 20km to go we get a second puncture on the other back wheel. A quick change over but we now have now spares for the long journey Andrew has to take to Arusha to meet us before we leave.

Luckily as each of those 20km passes , Andrew gets a bigger smile on his face. He finally shares and says: ” well at least with only 8km to go and falling I could help you carry the bags and we would still make it to the airport:)”

We get to the Headquaters and run into Rhyan, perfect, a little character reference might be useful. Rhyan directs us to the right person and after an initial coldish and suspicious reception , he warms up, makes a few calls and gives Andrew the name of head ranger at the exit gate reassuring us that all is well now. Thanks Rhyan:)

We fly back to Arusha with the plan for Andrew to meet us back at the hotel. We wish him no more punctures on the way.

The Serengeti is extremely dry now and most of the water holes are drying up. Without rain soon it could be a very tragic season for the migration. Fingers crossed it comes soon.

We land in Arusha and a friend of Andrew’s picks us up from the airport. They know each other from school days, really nice guy. André makes an impression on a group of French tourists by bringing their attention to the consequences of them just grinding their cigarette buts into the ground and how with the next rain they will end up in waterways, consumed by birds, fish and resulting in these creatures demise. Interestingly they respond with respect and that they are taking his comments on board. Way to go André!

Andrew’s friend owns a pizza place so we stop in there for lunch, yummy with a nice little Greek salad. We then head off to our hotel for a few hours of rest before the 9pm departure . Andrew reports in that he had a two hour delay at the park gates, as they would not take his cash to pay the fees and he had to wait till a friendly American tourist added him on his credit card and Andrew paid him the cash. This is going to be touch and go if he gets here.

We see that the hotel has a very ecological approach to gardening as two goats graze by keeping the lawns in perfect shape.

In the end with a heavy heart we have to make the decision to call on Andrew’s friend again to get us to the airport as Andrew is going to be too late. It is the start of the Easter weekend and traffic is bad.

We get a glimpse of Kilimanjaro as we reach the airport.

Farewell Tanzania and Africa. Our KLM flight is on time and off we go to Amsterdam.

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