89 – Destination Mombasa
Tues 23rd Feb, Tana Guest House, Mombasa, Kenya
Today was another full day of travel, with me blitzing through the towns. From Zanzibar to Dar Es Salaam, by boat, we arrived at 6am. The nice Zanzibari guy from the boat helped me flag a city bus bound for Ubungo bus station. Once there, i was hassled by many touts, and i just went with one. Being “spoken for” meant everyone else leaves you alone. I got my ticket from the counter. His demeanour completely changed when he noticed me writing my muslim name on the tix. He took it as his responsibility to take me safely aboard my bus, even telling the bus conductor he better take care of me. The bus company was Tahmeed (25000 TSH), one that i was completely unfamilar with. It was a smaller bus too, and i worried when we traveled on the bumpier stretch between Tanga and the border. The center of gravity was obviously higher on this bus and speeding might just flip it over. Thankfully that did not happen.
It was a 9 hour bus ride from Dar Es Salaam, stopping for lunch in Tanga (fish, yummy samaki, since its near the coast now), before heading on to the border at Lunga-Lunga. The Kenyan immigration was really getting suspicious as to why this fella was travelling to and fro so much. “Business?” “No, tourist”. He gave me one week, but i asked for two since i needed that much before going home.
The bus ride culminated in the ferry crossing at Likoni. All the vehicles went aboard a barge. Pedestrians followed suit and the whole retinue was transported across the channel. Prior to that, the bus conductor told everyone to go to the back of the bus. I was wondering why, but found out later when Security got everyone off the bus during the crossing. Going to the back of the bus was to hide so we won’t be asked off. Hahaha.
It was near dark when we reached Mombasa proper. There was no time to really do much, so i got my ticket to Lamu (Tahmeed again, 800 KSH, 8am departure, 7 hours – but theres a 10am departure too) and went to draw cash from the Barclays bank. I got myself some fried fish to eat with my home cooked pasta. And i got a much needed shower, after almost 48 hours in stinky sweaty clothing.