|Monday 10th September - Tanzania - Mbeya
I would like to dedicate this diary entry to Titch. Titch is a friend from Inverness, and is the only person who has emailed us specifically asking for creepy-crawlie stories. We have a few such stories to tell, so Ill gather some together here for you, Titch enjoy!
One morning in Sudan I passed up the rooftop storage bag to Andrew. He pulled the bag onto the roof of the car and then spotted a scorpion on it. Nobody was stung, but ever since weve been more careful about looking at things before picking them up.
In Samburu park in Kenya I was sitting in the back between the two girls when I noticed a big, black beetle walking on the drivers headrest in front of Keziah. I managed to calmly scoop it onto the lid of a crayon box and deposit it out of the window. I dont want the children to pick up on any irrational adult fears of beasties so I took a deep breath and pretended I wasnt at all bothered.
The Safari Inn in Dar es Salaam is not the most salubrious of establishments, but when we went down to breakfast one morning we were met by a big, dead cockroach on the doorstep of the restaurant. We were happy it was dead, but we would have preferred to be welcomed by a member of staff.
While camping at Ruaha national park we saw the biggest beetles we have ever seen. The unnerving thing about these creatures was their height. It looked as if they were walking about on mini stilts. We tucked our trousers into our socks that evening a dweeby look seemed preferable to shaking one of these out of a trouser leg.
When we arrived back at Riverside campsite after being at Ruaha, we camped at the same spot where we had been before. The girls leapt out of the car and ran over to the tricycles. Within a couple of minutes they were both wailing. They had run through a column of ants which had proceeded up onto their socks and sandals, biting their feet and legs. Horrible wee things (the ants, not the children .. well usually not the children).
We havent met too many horrifying creepy-crawlies (yet), but we certainly feel that rooftop tents are a good idea. It is comforting to be sleeping a few feet off the ground.
Anyway, today we drove on to Mbeya a drive of about 4 hours. Tonight we are camping at Utengule Country Hotel, a lovely hotel on a coffee plantation. There is a swimming pool, a tyre swing and wonderfully delicious cappuccinos, so we are all delighted.