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Africa » Tanzania » East » Dar es Salaam
October 1st 2006
Published: October 18th 2006
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Police ReportPolice ReportPolice Report

The police report for the stolen camera
What can we say about Tanzania.... every trip has its good and its bad times. Tanzania was for us, the bad time. From 29 countries visited, for sure, it's the one we would not recommend anyone to visit. Everything that exists in Tanzania to be visited can be found in the other neighbour countries (exception to the Kilimanjaro, but even that you can climb Mont Kenya). We have been only in Tanganyika (continental part of the country). Zanzibar still to be explored when we come back up.

Tanzania people are money oriented, not in the good way, like the workaholic cities of New York or Berlin, but in the way they want to make easy money. People ask for everything. We left a grocery store with some food and a taxi driver signal to us and from inside his car. He did a hand movement saying that he was hungry and wanted the food we'd just bought. A taxi driver begging? We gave a ride to some people on the road and instead of saying thank you, they asked for anything we had left in their sight of view (water, pen, book, anything).

Prices can be written in menus,
Land RoverLand RoverLand Rover

Once upon a time there was a dream about travel Africa by car...
but for you (myzungo, or white person) is more expensive. You can buy 9 times the same thing in the same store with the same seller, and in the 10th time they still try to rip you off. If you don't want to pay the extra price they sometimes don't even sell to you. Funny, this type of racism (oh yes, Tanzanians are extremely racist people) gives jail in our country, but here they find it normal.

You make deals with people and in the end they say they can't honor, and that is fine. "People here in Africa don't have a word! You can never believe then!" - This is a comment of a Tanzanian lady after not fulfilling her promise. The only thing I would correct in this statement is the "Africa" for "Tanzania", we had great experiences with many other Africans, unfortunatly not in Tanzania. We set up meetings to finish a deal, they just don't show up. You call them and "I'm sorry I was busy, can we do it tomorrow?". You go again in the next day and the same thing happens. They don't even bother calling to say they can't. Just let you wait for hours.

Wouldn't be fair if we said that all the people we met weren’t nice, but the good ones will pay for the bad ones.

Pictures? Well some unworthy Tanzanian has them all. As our memory card was full (Uganda, Rwanda, Congo and Tanzania) we would burn a CD as soon as we arrived in Dar es Salaam. But this scum Tanzanian did his work faster. As we left the bus from Mwanza (30 hours squeezed in this old colonization time bus) we took a van to the city center. And taking the opportunity that the van was crowded this ...(no definition for this being)... did his work and left before we realize the missing objects. The only pictures we have are the ones we send by e-mail before the robbery and the ones posted here for the previous countries. But anyway, the lack of pictures is a good representation of our Tanzanian experience.

In Tanzania we met lots of volunteers, but not many of them will come back there, after being robbed and cheated too. We meet a friendly group of Belgian Architecture students doing a project in Mwansa, also a group of Norwegian and Swedish students in Dar es Salaam. Thanks for all of them for making Tanzania experience better, hope to see then some day somewhere else.

The bad impression of Tanzania can be from a terribly bad luck we had, but sadly this will be the image that we will be carrying of Tanzania from now on.

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18th October 2006

Sorry Guys
Hey Fernando and Claudio! I am am honestly sorry and seriously shocked about what I was just reading about your Tanzanian experiences. You must really have had a bad time there. Off course, buying a car in a country like this you must be very lucky to get a real good deal. But all the other things that happend to you are really annoying. You seemed to be pissed and you are trying to keep people away from Tanzania now. But I believe, once you start making bad experiences in a particular country, your perception gets worse and things that happen get worse and so on. On all my African travels (should be 18 countries by now) Tanzania is definitely among the top five. And this is for exactly the opposite things that you wrote: nice, friendly and helpful people (except for very touristy areas), rough countrysides, few (harmless) begging, relatively safe in terms of minor crimes and most of all welcoming and affordable. I know that these arguments are my personal opinion (after all together 8 weeks of traviling Tanzania) and can not be taken as objective but the picture you are drawing sounds like a rough generalization written out of frustration (which I have totally empathy with). But this image you give to people who have never been to Tanzania or who are maybe planning to go there is a distorted one which is not fair towards all the tanzanians who try to make foreigners feel at home in their country even without making personal profit out of it (by the way Tanzania is among the six poorest countries in Africa). The only thing I do agree with you is the fact that by now they rip you of for going to the National Parks (which had been half price last year) and climbing Kilimandjaro. But the reason for these price explosions are once again we who have the desire and opportunity to visit these places. I hope you are fine by now and are still open hearted and looking positively forward to the other countries to come. Stay safe and have a good time with the people! Fabian (who is sometimes thinking of where the hell thiese guys might be right now!)
20th October 2006

Shit lads thats a tuff one - i had my camera stolen last week as well. i was lucky though i didnt have many pictures on it. Ah fuck it it'll bring whatever scumbag stole it no luck - some other fucker will probably steal it off him and he'll get pisdsed of go out and kill him and end up spending the rest of his days getting assfucked in African prison - HOPEFULLY Sorry to hear about it lads. Peace Vince From Ireland
21st October 2006

I read your blog in a little bit of a rush but got the same feeling you do. I feel your frustration too. I will conclude that what you experienced was not just bad luck but nothing different from what you'd expect anywhere in the world. I am African and have been conned money there in Tanzania by a Taxi driver. He left me bitter as hell, but I tried to get around things. The problem is that when a mzungu gets to a third world country you expect to walk on red carpets everywhere. When we travel to overseas we are not treated with any respect and have to learn to be tough and survivors. So in essence as you continue travelling, remember money can't buy you respect, love or happiness. Deal with it and hopefully when you get back home you'll have understood what it means to be a foreigner and treat those aliens with alot more respect and love. Africa is not just the people, focus on the scenery and you'll enjoy yourself so much. With all due respect!
2nd November 2006

are you still alive?
Onde estao agora? Ja lhes mataram os mauditos tanzanianos? Espero que voces estejam ainda vivos, com saude e seguindo o rumo da sua felicidade... AbracosZ
2nd November 2006

an interesting way out of tanza-freaking-nia
Para comecar quero dizer-lhes que o seu blog e o mais interesante que ja viu no internet, foi um acidente que o descubri..mas agora fico captivado pela storia da sua viagem e sua forma de viver a vida increiveis. E mais que so um blog otimo, e o melhor programa realidade, melhor que qualquer m+rda na televisao justamente porque e verdadeiramente "realidade"...sem manipulacao... Bom, eu nunca estive em Tanzania mais eu sei que ha um comboio (tren) de Tanzania (Dar es Salaam) a Lusaka, Zambia. De ali deve haver boas conexoes para Africa do Sul. Se querem passar o viagem ao sul falando portugues, ja sabem que Mocambique, um pais lusofono, esta situado entre Tanzania e Africa do sul, tem uma costa pelo oceano indico maravilhoso mas as comunicacoes sao pessimas...Boa sorte com tudo! Ze.
6th November 2006

Mambo vipi guys! Back in Belgium since one week, we finally have enough internet to get on your blog. We're very sorry to read about the unlucky event... too bad that you didn't get the chance to see Tanzania like we experienced it. We had a really great time in our little 'town' where you get to know the people much better than in the city. While we did our research we made friends and got to know the way of life there. We didn't want to go home at the end.. Once in a while we wondered about u guys, how u were doing, what u experienced, where u were, ... . Are u back in Brasil or still travelling to finish the two years? Hopefully u have some great times on the different places, We had a really good time with u two, the life band was much better sitting next to you. If u ever are in Belgium... :). Kwaheri Debbie and Frederique debbie_bieke@hotmail.com, frederique_nys@hotmail.com

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