Trip Start Mar 01, 2009
15Trip End Jun 25, 2009
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We were met at the airport by the project coordinator how looked after us brilliantly, having booked us into a hotel, took us out for dinner, showed us round the town and then travelled with us up to Longido which is the village where we'll be based for the next month. Longido is about 2 hours north of Arusha on the road up to Kenya and is a really beautiful Maasai village. With one road through the middle, the rest of the village is dirt tracks and small buildings, with traditional Maasai settlements called Bomas on the outskirts, and everywhere are men, women and children in the traditional Maasai dress and jewellery - feels like a pretty amazing place to be spending the next month!
We spent the first night in the 'luxury' tents that are up above the village and house various volunteers and sometimes tourists. The most amazing view across the huge planes with Mount Meru and Killimajaro in the distance. The next couple of weeks however we'll be staying down in a guesthouse in the village which is a nice way of getting to know more of the locals.
We're working about 20mins further up the road near a selection of Maasai Bomas called Kimokowa, and were shown the line that the water pipeline is going to take, bringing clean water to the Bomas and a small Maasai school. They previously had a couple of water holes which they had dug out, but children kept falling in them and drowning and the water was filthy. Infact an old lady fell in one of the water holes this week and drowned - very sad.
About 3 km of the pipeline has already been laid and we're hoping to take the pipeline at least up to the school during our time here.
Each day we walk for about 15mins from the road to the area we're digging and are joined by the local maasai who help with the digging - is a great fun atmosphere, the women and children even get involved sometimes. They bring us chai to drink everyday and we were even invited into their boma one day to drink with them.
It feels a real privaledge to be working alongside the locals and to be made so welcome and it's clear how important it is for them to have the project completed so there's a real sense of purpose.