We all met at Rob and Ntsia's home to arrange vehicle occupancy and where we gave Amanda her gifts. When you're stuck in Africa, you have to make do with giving whatever is available at the local shops. Ntsia and I have similar tastes: we like "bling". She gave Amanda a beautiful evening bag filled with her favorite toffees! The bag came from a Shinyanga supermarket, while the toffees were bought at a local duka here in Mwadui!
I knew that Amanda has no salad bowl so I bought her one from the same supermarket; inside I placed a really "bling" necklace and earring set. As I love handsoap in a dispenser, I bought her a beautifully fragranced one and added a set of "chocolate" ornamental soaps.
The beautiful evening bag from Ntsia and Rob is visible at bottom of photo while Amanda opens the salad bowl which we gave her
No matter how far from civilisation, a girl LOVES femine goodies!
Then the six of us piled into two cars and we were off!
The little cat, Joy, that I feed every week in Shinyanga
The first stop was at the "Duka kwa Paka"/ the cat shop. It's not a pet shop and doesn't have anything to do with cats. It's a household utensils- and appliance center where, a year ago, I discovered a young kitten was being kept indoors to catch rats. As it was far too small to find its own dinner so I took food every week when I go to Shinyanga. I also leave a full tin of food and cat cookies and the staff assure me they feed the cat during the week. Stopping off there and feeding it has now become a habit, albeit a pleasurable one. On Sunday, while I fed little Joy, Amanda and Andre bought a couple of kitchen utensils. Grant checked out prices of a flat - screen television and a small deepfreeze for future reference.
Our next stop was at a hotel on the outskirts of town. We were the only guests and had to sit on the patio as the large boma hadn't been cleaned after Saturday night's disco dance. Amanda's mom in South Africa wanted to see the people her daughter celebrating her birthday with, so we posed in front of a dry water feature while Amanda snapped us on her Smartphone. We had a drink, shared two plates of delicious chips masala (French fries in a spicy sauce) and departed for town again.
Andre, Grant, Jo, Ntsia and Rob
In town we stopped off at the supermarket where everyone bought various items - cream crackers, cheese, toilet soap, toothpaste - just for the fun of shopping! (Well, I didn't as I do a large shop for the company Guest House every week which is enough for me!)
Finally we stopped at Rob's friend's hotel, The Butiama. It's a hotel owned by a Tanzanian - born Indian couple. Minas and Ruby are very hospitable, love having expats over while they serve delicious, freshly - cooked spicy vegetarian snacks throughout the day.
Hotel Butiama, Shinyanga
Paneer Samoosas served with a chilli tomato salsa
Rob was in Arusha last week and bought birthday hats for all of us!
Andre, Minas and Grant with Rob peeking over Mina's arm
Rob lights four candles on the teeny birthday cake which Mina's set out for Amanda
We finally left the hotel at 4.30pm. We'd arranged to meet at Andre and Amanda's home for coffee and scrumptious grenadilla (passion fruit) cake which Tilla had baked for Amanda. All the expats on the Client camp arrived on their veranda to join in the celebrations. A really fun and relaxing day was had by all!
Tilla's famous passion fruit cake
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