Sunday, December 23, 2012

Day 8 - Kilimanjaro Coffee Tour and a Trip to Town


This morning the majority of the group headed off to do a one day climb on Mt. Kilimanjaro, so those of us who did not feel that our fitness level was up to the climb (Sandy, Taz, Tash, Jenny and I) went on the Kilimanjaro Coffee Tour.

We arrived at the coffee farm and were greated by Peter. We sat down and had a cup of coffee. Peter explained how there is a co-op involving three local villages and how the production and sales of the coffee helps the villages. So far, money earned by the group has been used to improve the main road up to the coffee farm and build schools. The project they are currently working on is to provide school lunch for the local children. The Union Cafe that we frequent is also accociated with this co-op.

After our coffee, which was very good, we were introduced to our tour guide, Josephus. We walked down a dirt road/track to a small house. When we got there Josephus explained how they grow the coffee plants and each stage from harvest to cup. We were then able to pick our own beans and put them through the machine that seperates the green bean from the outer berry. The green beans then need to be washed and dried for 24 hours. Due to lack of time Josephus provided us with some dried beans that we beat in a morta and pessel to remove the second skin then roasted in a clay pot over an open fire. When the beans were roasted we then pounded them into a powder using the morta and pessel. Josephus then boiled some water over the fire and brewed us a pot of coffee using the beans we had just roasted. The coffee was very, very strong and we didn't have milk so I couldn't drink it! After the coffee tour we returned to the starting point where we were served a traditional Chugga lunch. The Chugga are one of  the local tribes from this area and is the tribe that Lious comes from. The lunch was delicious. We started with a banana soup which sounds disgusting but it is really nice. It actually tasted like chicken soup. Then we had a meal of rice, beef in sauce, stewed bananas, green beans and mango. Again, the stewed bananas sounds disgusting but was really good. It tasted like and had the same texture as potato.

After returning from the tour we decided to head into town. We started at the Union Cafe where we each had a milkshake and shared four pieces of cake; passionfruit cheesecake, carrot cake, baked berry cheesecake and chocolate cake. The cakes were okay but they were much dryer than we are used to at home.

We then had a walk around town but a lot of the shops were closed because it was Sunday afternoon. I did buy a pair of pants for 20 000 shillings ($12.18 AUD) though. 20 000 shillings is on the higher end of the accepted price range for these pants but I really couldn't be bothered bartering to much this afternoon.

I am back to placement tomorrow but I have no idea what the plan is for the afternoon. I still haven't done any laundry so maybe that will be on the agenda but I am seriously considering paying one of the Dadas to do it.

Anyway, I am tired so I am going to bed early tonight and I will try to give you boys a call in the morning (12:30pm your time) if you are home by then otherwise I will have to catch you at another time.

Love you <3

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