We continued to wander around Stone Town after leaving Lulu ben’s place and saw some more beautiful buildings…
We walked through the fish market, which was full of interesting Indian Ocean sea creatures but which quite overpowered the olfactory senses.
We wandered through the stalls laden with packaged aromatic spices, and I picked up packets of vanilla and cinnamon…some for me, some as gifts…
The midday sun was making us very hot and the sight of coconuts being expertly sliced at a corner made us stop and have a few, despite Lulu ben’s concern about all of us needing a loo afterwards. They were deliciously cool and sweet, and we drank straight from the coconuts, quenching our thirst most delightfully, scooping out the soft, translucent flesh with spoons carved from the husk itself.
I could have easily had twenty of those little coconuts. Wish I could have taken pictures, but my hands were sticky and I was too preoccupied 🙂
We ate platefuls of something they simply call ‘Mix’, which is basically a concoction of fried lentil ‘bhajias’ soaked in a yogurt based curry, spicy and lemony, with a liberal sprinkling of crunchy crisps, made by an old Kutchi-Memon lady by the name of Sughra.
We chatted with two young Kenyan-Indian couples who had been on the same ferry as us in the morning and apparently had no hang-ups about being appropriately dressed in a conservative place. We laughed sympathetically as one of the couples dealt with their two yr old in the throes of a fizzy drink demanding tantrum.
We meandered through another part of Stone Town where there were quaint souvenir shops here and there and we stopped to peruse these before making our way over to the street that led to the ferry dock.
I spent too much time comparing prices of goods from one shop to the next (and they really DID vary rather dramatically at times) but Lulu ben and Tina (much to their credit) hardly betrayed any impatience. The only thing I ended up buying was a colourful painting of Masaai tribesmen which I haggled over rather satisfactorily, asked the shopkeeper to take it off the canvas frame and roll it up as fast as he could, walking out of the shop triumphantly, one souvenir richer, 15000 Tanzanian shillings poorer. Not a bad deal at all!
(It now hangs, nicely framed, on my living room wall.)
It was 3:35 as we walked out of Stone Town and made our way over to a deserted Forodhani in the afternoon. The ferry was to leave at 4 pm, so we bought some cold soft drinks and found a place to relax for a bit and enjoy the sea view before heading over to the ferry that would take us back to Dar…
(to be continued..)