Thursday, January 20, 2011

Spice Tour

Another excursion in Zanzibar took us to the local farms where spices and fruits are grown.

For this part, I felt like I was completely lost in the jungle, surrounded by tall tropical trees and tons of bugs. This little guy was my favorite! Have you ever seen a neon green spider?

It was really interesting to learn how all these common fruits and spices can be grown in the same area. At one point the tour guide took a knife to the bark of a tree. When I smelled it, I could tell right away that it was cinnamon. They use every part of the tree for something. Some parts are better for adding flavor to tea, while others are better for cooking.

Each time we came to a different tree, one of the guides would climb all the way to the top so we could see the fruit up close.

There were so many different fruits in this area, and we got to try most of them.
Jackfruit (Fenesi)

Pineapple (Nanas)

Banana (Ndizi)

Coconut (Nazi)

Once again, I tried every piece of food they put in front of me. I don't think I'll ever be a fan of Passion Fruit, but the rest was so delicious!  

At the end of the tour, one of the guides had made us all accessories from banana tree leaves. It's the latest fashion here in Africa... at least I tried to start the trend.

This adorable kid came up to me and gave me a ring made from banana leaves. It was so sweet! A little later on I saw him again and he continued to greet me and have a little conversation in Swahili. He was admiring my bracelet and finally asked if he could have it. Would you turn down a face like this??

But the bracelet was a good luck/parting gift from my good friend Geoff (who is currently freezing in the northernmost province of China). It had the word “Serve” written on it. So, Geoff, I want you to know that the bracelet has gone to a better home, and you absolutely made this child's day. He was jumping for joy!

On the way home we stopped at an old white building that looked sort of like a temple. 

It was actually a bathhouse constructed by a Sultan for his wife, Persian Princess Sheharzade.

It was a pretty advanced system for its day. In the toilet section, you would walk up a few stairs where there were several stalls, each with a hole in the floor. Slaves would be underneath these stalls with buckets... and then they would leave when the person was finished. I'm very serious when I say this was an advanced system—for 1832.  

No comments:

Post a Comment