Sunday, February 14, 2010

Lake Chala

Saturday a group from the hostel went to Lake Chala which is a lake that is between Tanzania and Kenya. We rented a dalladalla (mini-bus) for the day because they don’t run there and we agreed on a price the night before with the driver. After arriving a half hour late the driver told us that he was going to charge us more than what we had decided because we wanted to stay at the lake until four. We said no and he basically was unwilling to change his mind so we all got off of the bus and started walking back into the gates of the hostel. Then he realized we were serious that we weren’t going to be paying anymore than we agreed on and he decided to take us for the original price.
It only took about an hour or so to get to the lake but the last half of the drive was on dirt roads that were incredibly bumpy. I think I hit my head on the ceiling of the dalladalla four or five times. The lake was gorgeous. Across the lake from us was Kenya and we were thinking about walking there (probably a few hours hike) but decided against it because we did not bring any food and did not have enough water. To get down to the water we had to walk down steep rocky narrow slopes.
There were two boys fishing off of a log when we got down there. I tried to talk to them but I think they had a hard time understanding my broken Swahili combined with English. The were using a stick and a string as a fishing rod. They also had a net that they put in the water and were able to catch a couple of tiny fish with.
Another group of boys came over from another area of the lake and one of the younger ones attached an empty container/jug to his back and used it as a flotation device so that he could swim. He was adorable but I was worried that he was going to get too far away from the rocks and his flotation device would fall off and he wouldn’t know how to swim.
A few of the girls from the hostel went swimming and a few of us walked around a little bit but it was hard because the rocks were slippery and loose. It was really gorgeous though and I definitely would like to go back there.
On the way home I covered my face with my bandana (like a cowboy) to keep the dust out of my nose and mouth. There was so much dust that I thought my arm had gotten a lot of color because it looked like I had a tan line where my watch was but after I showered I realized it was dirt that was making me look darker…gross.

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