Today, for the second time this week, as a family, we went on an eight hour road trip!
Nothing is close-by here. Dodoma has the basic stuff, it's not totally rural but it's not like 'home' either ... whatever that is anymore! To get to somewhere that vaguely resembles the majority of our UK or US life experience to date we have to drive for a whole day!
The scenery is both breath-taking and heart breaking. Amazing vista's and landscapes, mountains, dry dust devils, lush palms, small businesses, mud huts. You see wealth and poverty, thriving businesses and people striving to make a living. There isn't a stretch of road where you won't find someone walking from A to B ... even when there is no obvious A or B for miles around! We even saw a random pig wandering across the road at one point.
The traffic is quite something else too! You can drive for 5 or 10 minutes without seeing anything or anyone ... then there are stretches when multiple crazy kamikaze bus drivers try to overtake you in the face of other oncoming crazy kamikaze drivers! Loooonnnnnnggggg stretches of the road are straight but you can be assured that the only time you need to overtake anyone there will be blind bends and limited visibility!
The speed bumps are quite something else (a more recent addition from when I last lived here) ... some of them are seriously vicious! The state of the road itself always makes me chuckle! It's a main road, or should I say the only road from Dar Es Salaam the commercial capital of Tanzania to the actual capital, Dodoma. However, for the most part, you would be forgiven for not recognizing it as such!
For us as a family it is out route 'out'! To escape the dust of Dodoma, the small close community, the humdrum of the basic every day stuff ... even if it is just for a few days. This week the girls were superstars the whole way there and back which is just as well as this journey is going to get incredibly familiar! Not one of the pluses of living here but not all that bad either ... you just have to get on with it, especially as that is our main route in and out of the country when it comes to airports both for us and for visitors!