The beaches of Kigamboni stretch for kilometers beyond the harbor. Soft white sand slopes gently into the Indian Ocean, which is bathtub-warm.
Saturday morning, a number of students went to the Kariakoo markets with Kathy, shopping for fabric / dresses / soccer jerseys. Kevin had a chance to go with his family to their shamba (small farm)all day. In the afternoon we caught a ferry across the narrow mouth of the Dar es Salaam harbor to Kigamboni, and a daladala to the beach, which we enjoyed for the afternoon.
This week we’re spending most afternoons at the UDSM for a variety of lectures, mostly on history. Prof. Mapunda told us about pre-colonial history--the many ethnic groups, the arrival of Bantu farmers who gradually displaced hunter gatherers, the Maasai, and some of the history (involves cattle rustling!) of the groups in the Mara region, where we’ll be located on the second half of SST. Prof Kessy talked about the archaelogical evidence for coastal towns which took part in long distance trade networks reaching to India, China, and beyond. This was the culture in which the Swahili language arose. It has clear roots as a Bantu language but has many loan words from Arabic, as well as a smattering of Portuguese, German, and more recently English.