So excited to share more of our experiences in Tanzania today. When the wonderful kids at Rolina were at school during the day, Jeff, Zach, and I would spend time in the neighboring towns outside of KwaSadala.
One of my favorite people in Tanzania (and maybe, the world) is Cocaya. She is incredibly smart and passionate and beautiful. She founded and runs a social enterprise that addresses the social and economic needs of disabled, disenfranchised, and marginalized people in Kilimanjaro. Cocaya knows sign language and uses it to teach deaf people how to sew. They make the most beautiful handmade textiles that they sell at their wonderful garden house.
Cocaya is so warm and welcoming – I never wanted to leave her beautiful house. There are gorgeous flowers all around and a lush garden. I could have sat all day with her. She is also one of those people who knows how to connect instantly. We had a number of deep conversations about our dreams in life, about family, about politics and race in America, and about being a female leader in Tanzania.
Please contact me if you are going to Tanzania and would like to visit Shirikisha.
One day while the kids were at school we caught a public bus to the base of Mt. Kilimanjaro and planned to go on a hike to a waterfall.
Along the way we ran into one of Jeff and Octavian’s friends (that happens a lot in Tanzania) who runs a coffee farm in the village – Hillborn Organic Coffee. Oscar took us to his farm and walked us through every step of harvesting and roasting coffee beans. One of the most important steps is singing while you shell and grind the beans!
Oscar’s coffee is without a doubt the best coffee I have had (and I am a coffee lover!).
Octavian, our wonderful friend and guide throughout Tanzania, stopped us along the way to point out a native plant or a local bird. We eventually made it to the waterfall and it was spectacular.
Afterwards we stopped at Oscar’s bar and met his family and had a dance party in the jungle. It was a great day.
Thank you to Cocaya and Oscar and everyone else we met in Kilimanjaro for blessing us with such wonderful experiences.
More on our Tanzanian safari tomorrow!