Dodoma!

We drove 8 hours from Dar to Dodoma, there wasn’t as much wildlife as I thought there would be. Only a few birds and a couple stray dogs. The scenery along the way was mostly of slums, individuals walking the highway, fruit stands and mountains. We made a couple of pit stops at the fruit stands, where we were swarmed with children and teenagers asking us to buy their produce. Our guides for the day were buying lots of fruit for their families and the locals never seemed content no matter how much they bought. We got to take a few pictures with the children; they were very reluctant at first but then it kind of turned into a funny game to get into the pictures.

The New Dodoma Hotel looks identical to the picture I posted a few weeks ago. It’s absolutely gorgeous, fully loaded with charm, culture and a few small hiccups. I woke up at about 5am this morning to what sounded like a man shouting through a horn about something, but his voice kept projecting then disappearing and then coming back again, afterwards music picked up until about 6:30am – didn’t get a great sleep but hoping that tonight will be a bit quieter.

I had a really long day today, woke up around 7:30am and didn’t get home until 7:30pm. Sarah and I spent the morning with Heather and the VETA teachers. We were introduced to the students and we introduced ourselves; every time we exited a room we could hear them giggling away. The teachers informed us that they were laughing because of our accents and pronunciation of our names. They find my name hard to understand and just call me Kathryn, & they love saying Sarah’s name out loud because they are familiar with it, on some level.

We spent the rest of the day at St. Gasper Hotel, and were shown the huge grounds, the new pool and their logo, the 400 year old Baobod tree. It was a long day of trying to figure out what we could help with because they are already such an established organization. We came up with some programming for the pool opening such as Marco Polo and Limbo – all extremely hilarious & entertaining concepts to Lucas, the HR manager (Sarah and I acted them out to give him a better comprehension).

St. Gasper is also extremely gorgeous; it has a laid out garden that is divided up into sections of palm trees, colourful bushes and exotic flowers. They have 5 large meeting and conference rooms that sit up to as many as 500 guests. It was interesting to see how they operate as leaders and also as individual team members between all the event management elements; such as, food and beverage, food preparation, human resources, housekeeping and so on. We’ll be helping them for the this week with a large government conference of approximately 700 people. Hopefully I’ll get to help out logistically and maybe by being a runner, but as I said they are pretty self-sufficient as it is.

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