Wednesday, 14 December 2011

On Lake Chala and hills that my boys thought were mountains……………

It was wonderful to be driving away from the KCMC compound on Saturday as I had begun to go a bit stir crazy.  Sam picked us up at 9am in his taxi sporting a Barcelona football club swinging, not quite furry, dice attached to the front window.  The drive was beautiful and I tried to encourage Zac and Josh to come up with more adventurous eye spy objects outside the car!

After about an hour we turned off onto a dirt road for about 10 km and arrived at the dusty red campsite where our family tent was waiting to be erected.  Lake Chala is a deep, deep lake situated in a crater fed with water from Mount Kilimanjaro.  Half of the lake is situated in Tanzania and half in Kenya and one of Aaron’s mad running friends from the ISM school told how when he was running around the rim he hopped over the fence and discovered from some men in a field that he was now in Kenya!

Tent with a view.....
We met a lovely Australian family who have settled in Arusha.  As they couldn’t afford the ISM fees for their 3 children and didn’t find an alternative school they liked, they started a new school themselves!  They have 3 children aged 10, 8 and 6 who got on with Zac and Josh like a house on fire.  We all climbed down the extremely steep and dusty path to the lake where we had a wonderful swim in the refreshing cool water and basked on the rocks.  Apparently the last crocodiles were seen here 9 years ago. By seen we mean that it was the last time someone had been eaten by one!  

It was amazing being in such a beautiful, peaceful place – well that is when Josh stopped talking!  We sat and talked and the kids played and we ate and drank and in the evening sat by the fire pit looking at the stars and bright almost full moon. I would like to say we had a peaceful nights sleep but Zac kept waking up sleep talking. Every few hours he sat bolt upright and at one point looked straight at Aaron and said 'they're coming!' (we did find out who was coming as he had no recollection of anything) at 6am when it was light both boys bounced up and bounced on.

It was so hot by 7am that I decided we should go for a walk up a nearby hill to see the early morning view of the lake.  Now by rights this walk should have taken 30 mins but with Zac and Josh it took 1 ½ hours and you should have heard the whingeing!
 “My feet hurt, I have gravel in my shoes, the thorns have scratched me, where are we, are we nearly at the top of this mountain, can we go for breakfast now, I’m hungry…………….”

I didn't realise the mosquitoes were that big!
Is this my lunch?

Waking up: view from the tent

Sunrise over the lake

The bar was always too busy.......

We finally arrived at the top......
But I'm now BLIND!!!!

The small hill Josh thought was a mountain

A lizard mid poo!
The view was magnificent and Zac and Aaron even saw a baboon amongst the half built abandoned luxury lodges.  We had another swim before lunch and  came back exhausted but happy to Moshi after our first weekend away.
Do you find this in your toilet?

1 comment:

  1. We look hopefully at the computer screen each day in case there is/are more fascinating blogs. We admire your joint descriptive talents and think there are four literary stars blossoming under the African moon.