Pictures of travellers always thrilled me and still do. Every time I log on to Instagram, I see scenic mountain views, the wonders of the world, the white beaches of Zanzibar, the mountain gorillas of Rwanda, the green and exquisite Amazon forests, the Masai Mara and beautiful landscapes of East Africa, the dancing Masai, with captions reading along the line of “travelling, an antidote to ignorance” . I envision myself sandwiched between those travelers, I imagine myself standing on the summit of Mt. Kilimanjaro, at the highest point of Africa. I see myself pausing for photos in front the Eifel tower, I picture myself celebrating the new year at the Times square, sometimes I imagine me smiling all alone after returning from the Taj Mahal, going to a francophone country or a country where the language spoken is the one found in reggae tone music. Places where I can learn a different culture. Every time I eat food, I imagine it to be food made by hands of another ethnicity, the name I know not.
Early this year, I challenged myself and travelled with a friend to a place where one of the language I speak is spoken (according to the media/society). I made a stop in Dar-es-salaam to take a rest so I can leave for Zanzibar the next morning. That’s when lessons started started flowing endlessly from the behaviour of people, to their beliefs, to the language spoken which was different from society’s supposed language, ex ce tra…
Reaching Zanzibar, everything was record high: the temperature, the prices of food, the number of people who came to propose at the white sandbanks, perhaps even the number of high people was record high, maybe even high blood pressure was high.
I for one don’t like reading books that many people read because it makes you think like everyone else. But this book of being in Zanzibar is a different book I was glad reading irrespective of the high number of people who read it.
However, I was disappointed for the fact that there’s a lot of fake stuff in that exquisite island. Elderly women who take advantage of the vulnerability of the young Masai boys (who I was told were equally not Masai) is one of them., I was equally disappointed by the fact that the place started showing itself to me as days of my vacation were running out. I came to know that many restaurants have two different menus. The fake one you’ll be given when you reach there (which contains other foods) and the REAL ZANZIBARI one which contains the food eaten by people of Zanzibar from ugali, karamali to so very many others.
Challenge yourself and go out of your comfort zone. Travel alone, travel with a friend, travel as a family, travel with your mind, travel when you have money, travel when you are broke, travel as you come to know travelling is an antidote to ignorance.