Monday, June 9, 2014

Day trip to .....

We had the world's greatest non experience today. Took 3 hours and we got nowhere.

We started out to go to the hot springs. We used a private driver rather than the tour company to save some money. The driver claimed he knew the way, he knew the way, he knew the way....but had to ask for directions 4 times before we really got suspicious. Finally some guy got into the car with us assuring us "There be some big problem ahead but we overcome!"  There were 13 of us - adding the hick hiker who knew things was 14. Several times he got out to direct us across small streams, crater sized pot holes in the dirt road and to consult with other drivers. Each time he assured us that was not yet the big problem.

The big problem turned out to be a patch of road into which a semi could have become mud logged. Nor driver not being the bravest cleverly drove around the edge where we got 1/2 way across and 2 wheels stuck. Really stuck.

This of course drew a crowd because it was a slow day in who knows where and no  one knew where the hot springs were anyway. A van of stuck mzungu was way more interesting. After about 20 people had weighed in on the problem they determined we needed to lighten the van - take out some people. Of course. We opened the door onto the water side. Ankle deep? Knee? Infested with??? Resourcefully people started to climb out the windows on the dry side. They determined the load was light enough before I had to do that.

Then a 4 wheel drive safari tour jeep came by and zipped through the mud easily. He stopped on the dry side and got out - came back and masterfully drove the van across the mud to the dry spot on the other side. At that point we told him to turn around, now have in less than 20 minutes to enjoy the hot springs. If indeed they did exist. On that road. 

He ferried us back followed by the group of jumpers who had gone overboard to help. Our driver took charge again - with the hitch hiker who rode not only back to his starting point but on to his house, then asked for money for getting us to the hot springs.

The real hoot was we had 4 new volunteers in tow and promised them a relaxing day at the springs. After a while we just promised to get home before our severely shaken bladders burst. When the driver missed the turn to our road, we stopped promising anything at all.

On the up upside there were numerous very rural children who waved and jumped around as we passed and will probably recount the adventures of the crazy mzungu at dinner.

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