Wednesday, February 19, 2014

Secret Students

While my peers back in South Carolina were out of school because of the ice storms, I was enjoying the warm, tropical climate of Iringa; but our fates must have been intertwined, because I was also barred from classes. For me, it was because we had tourist visas to enter the country with the idea that once we entered, we would obtain student visas or resident permits with the help of our program. The process is slow, especially if you're not in a big city like Dar, and we weren't technically allowed to be taking classes with tourist visas, so we had to stay out of the classroom for a couple of days . . . and this, of course, turned into a week. We started our classes again today. Fortunately, during that week we were still able to have our Swahili class with Bw. Paulo, since he is with CIEE and not the university. And when we weren't learning Swahili, since we did have tourist visas, we became tourists.
Bw. Paulo took us to Kalenga, where the skull of Chief Mkwawa has its final resting-place. In the same room are displayed some replicas of traditional Hehe spears, shields, and cooking utensils.

 After leaving Kalenga, we headed to Isimila, a stone-age site boasting incredible pillars made of eroded sandstone. We were able to see the pillars from above, and then to hike in the bottom, which is a seasonal riverbed. It was an incredible hike, but I feel like the best thing to do for you now is to leave you here with some extra-large photos.

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