February 18, 2012
I woke up this morning knowing it was my last sunrise in Africa and that in just a few hours I would start my journey back home, back to Toronto, my husband, my darling cat. Breakfast on the beach was lovely and after eating and packing up we all boarded a shuttle van that took us back to Stone Town.
Instead of taking the ferry back to Dar es Salaam I had decided to take a small plane off Zanzibar and fly directly into the Dar airport. I had some time to kill so a few of us wandered around Stone Town one last time and indulged in a delicious lunch at a hotel I could only dream of staying at.
When it was finally time to go the group said goodbye with promises of open doors and dreams of future travel plans. It was a sweet, earnest moment filled with hope and honesty. And then it was over. The hugs stopped, a cab pulled up and I was on my way home.
Zanzibar airport was a sweltering, sweaty, crowded mess. I sat myself in front of a fan and waited until my flight number was called (no displays or loudspeakers in this place), there was just a guy at the door who called out airlines and numbers over the din of the crowd. Luckily I didn’t have to wait too long and when my plane pulled up everyone just walked across the tarmac where a moment ago another plane had landed. Crazy!
From Zanzibar I flew to Dar es Salaam, then onto Nairobi, followed by Amsterdam. I had an 8 hour layover in Amsterdam (and I arrived at 5am) so I checked into their airport hotel (called Yotel) for 6 hours and was able to shower, catch a nap and watch some tv. It was awesome and for $100 totally worth it.
Feeling all fresh from my shower and change of clothes I boarded my last flight home and 8 hours later arrived in Toronto, into the loving arms of my husband. 24 hours earlier I had been on the gorgeous island of Zanzibar, not wanting it to be over and now, in the midst of a Toronto winter, finally home with my husband and kittycat, I didn’t want to be anywhere else.