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Spice Tour

Here's some more from our time on Zanzibar. We went on a spice tour where we enjoyed hiking around the interior of the island. We got to see how some of our favorite (and some lesser-known) spices and fruits are grown. Many of the plants on the island are not native, but were imported and grown on large plantations. Pemba, the lesser-known island and other half of the Zanzibar Archipelago, is home to many clove plantations, many of which were started in the mid-1800's by Sultan Seyed Said. This was our guide-- showing us nutmeg & mace. Nutmeg is a small, round, brown kernel which is wrapped in a plasticky-looking web (which is mace) and then a yellow outer fruit-like covering.

Ryan sniffing nutmeg wrapped in mace.

click here for more photos of our spice tour...

Posted January 25, 2011
Dar es Salaam--National Museum & Hominid Fossils
The National Museum, Dar es Salaam, Tanzania
One of the main attractions to the National Museum is the "Zinj" skull and the Laetoli footprints, fossil evidence of early hominids discovered in Tanzania. The Museum has a well-curated exhibit for these two stars and does a good job of explaining how they fit into current evolutionary theory. "Zinj" or Australopithecus Boisei (Zinjantropus) lived 1.75 million years ago. Discovered by Dr. Mary Leakey on 17th July 1959 at Olduvai Gorge, Arusha Region, Tanzania (from the Museum's exhibit tag).

see the Laetoli footprints and more...

Posted January 24, 2011
A warm & sunny Christmas

This was our first Christmas away from family and without blustery weather typical of the East Coast & Midwest of the United States. We spent it at Mikadi Beach Camp, in Kigamboni, which is just South of Dar es Salaam, Tanzania. They had a lovely Christmas tree made of a metal frame with little lights, springs of tropical evergreens alongside bird of paradise flowers, and ornaments crafted with coral and seashells. There was even a star on top, but unfortunately it got cut off of the photo below.

The proprietress' mother decorating the tropical Christmas tree.

More stories and photos of Christmas...

Posted January 17, 2011
All aboard!... the train to Tanzania

The TEEZ office closes for a couple weeks for the Christmas and New Years holidays, so we decided to follow in the footsteps of previous GMFs and visit Tanzania.

We boarded the TAZARA (Tanzania Zambia Railway) and traveled for 2.5 days all the way from Kapiri Mposhi, Zambia, to Dar es Salaam, Tanzania. Following are some views from the train...

There was a Zambian family in a nearby compartment. At one point, the father was with his young (6 yrs?) son, Wope, looking out the window, showing him the villages.
Wope asked, "What's a village?"
Dad replied, pointing, "That's a village. It has goats, and mangoes, and bananas, and little boys like you."
To this, Wope looked up nervously at his father and said, "But I don't want a village!"

At every stop, there were women and children selling all sorts of things to passengers through the train windows--water, fruits & vegetables, rice, potatoes, nshima, snacks, even perfume and clothing and toys. We bought rolls, boiled eggs, mangoes and bananas for our breakfasts. Some people even bought the whole huge bunches of bananas--like those seen above.

Posted January 16, 2011
Molly & Ryan Dowell Baum

Author: Molly & Ryan Dowell Baum
Created: July 26, 2010

"We are the scatterlings of Africa/On a journey to the stars/Far below, we leave forever/Dreams of what we were ..." -Johnny Clegg

Where are we?
The Dowell Baum Team is at home in Kitwe.
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