Julita explores from Cape to Cairo: Episode 6 — Beautiful Tanzania

  1. Julita explores from Cape to Cairo: Episode 1 — The miracles begin
  2. Julita explores from Cape to Cairo: Episode 2 — The journey begins
  3. Julita explores from Cape to Cairo: Episode 3 — Into the unknown
  4. Julita explores from Cape to Cairo: Episode 4 — Africa arise!
  5. Julita explores from Cape to Cairo: Episode 5 — Respect for missionaries
  6. Julita explores from Cape to Cairo: Episode 6 — Beautiful Tanzania
  7. Julita explores from Cape to Cairo: Episode 7 — God’s timing
  8. Julita explores from Cape to Cairo: Episode 8 — Zanzibar blessings
Breathtaking highland town of Lusotho, Tanzania

It feels totally surreal that I am writing to you from a starry night in the Serengeti, Tanzania. I am sleeping in my car tonight. It has been raining and is very muddy and I just could not put up my rooftop tent and for the hotels in Serengeti — anything from $2 000 (R29 500) to $12 000 (R177 000) a night) I just do not have the money!

And so interesting, for sleeping in my own car, I pay $40 (R590) per night and my car pays $150 (R2 212) per day. Plus all the fees. 4 days in Serengeti, sleeping in my own car, is costing $1 300. But it is a once in a lifetime experience and I am in the area, so here I am.

Tanzania is by far the most beautiful country so far. And I am quite surprised how many Christians there are in a Muslim country. And so many missionaries. And everywhere I find South Africans, Canadians, French, American, Spanish and German people making a living for themselves in Tanzania.

I visited a church with 50 people and I visited a church with 7 000 people. The contrast was mind blowing. It left many questions. I met so many locals having church under a tree and if you ask what denomination, they answer Anglican. I take my hat off to the missionaries who went before us and planted all these little churches. Simply amazing to me — and they are still going and growing.

Dar es Salaam street

In Mbeya, in the south of Tanzania, I met a lot of interesting people. I met a Namibian family who gave up everything to spread the Gospel. Many years later they are settled in Tanzania and their now-in-their-30s children have all started businesses there. All three of them speak fluent Swahili and I again saw what language does.

I met a few businessmen who have made it their life’s mission to bring change to Africa — for instance fresh water to all. They are inventors and quite amazing what they have been doing. We were talking about God for hours on end. I also met a guy, Christian, who wants to find the original sound of lamenting in the church. He came to Africa as he feels this is where it all started. Cannot believe the quests God sends people on.

I met so many different people while buying street food and sitting in their little restaurants. They were fascinated by this Mzungu (white person) sitting in their shops. But that is where you see the actual culture. I find the Tanzanian people to be so helpful and friendly. But they also think all Mzungu’s have money.

Beautiful hot spring

Dar es Salaam was terrible. It is totally overpopulated by bajajis (tuktuks) and pikipiki’s (motorcycles) and no traffic rules apply to them. No stopping at red lights, no speed limit, nothing like that. They do what they want and when they want and I found them to be worse than our taxi drivers in SA. But their system seems to work as long as everybody drives like that. At least I found a coffee shop there with reasonable coffee.

I continued towards Moshi and slept over in a place called Lusotho!! It took my breath away. Deep in the mountains and what fascinates me is that there are thousands of people living high up in the mountains. They use every bit of soil for farming and they walk or use pikipiki. It truly fascinates me to see how they live up there.

And then I arrived in Moshi and everyone said that I will not be able to see Kilimanjaro as it is rainy season now and she is permanently covered in clouds. But they do not know my God. I asked Him and that afternoon I saw her. Five times higher than Table Mountain. Breathtakingly beautiful. Snow is getting less up there as it is becoming warmer and warmer each year.

I also met a Maasai gentleman and was able to share the Gospel of good news with him. That was a fascinating conversation.

I continued to Arusha and on the way I took a turn and traveled on a terrible, terrible road only to discover the most beautiful hot spring. It was a dry and ugly environment and then suddenly…… the most beautiful pool I have ever seen. I swam there and became aware of little fish that were nibbling at my feet and realised they were eating off all the dead skin. I had my own foot spa right there and then. Absolutely stunning.

Arusha is the most beautiful city in Tanzania I have seen so far. I slept over at the house of conservationists and was fascinated by their seed banks. They plant and grow forests. I have learned such a lot. And everywhere I go, I share my God stories with people. I also met a famous French winemaker and he told me that he has retired now, but is going to plant Tanzanian’s first vineyard and make some great wine. It was lovely talking to him and his wife, who is the daughter of missionaries who came to Tanzania many years ago. God just wanted to stir their hearts.

Maasai people

And now I am in the Serengeti. I have been so close to lions and cheetahs, if I wanted to, I could put my hand out the window and touch them. There is nothing like God’s creation to display His splendour and then there is His most beautiful creation, us. I have a tour guide with me and he cannot go anywhere. He has to sit and listen to my God stories for 8 hours a day while we 4×4 and look for animals. The Serengeti is mind blowing. The vastness and the many animals get to you. Spectacular.

I will spend another three weeks in Tanzania going to the other side of it. I feel there are more things that I need to do here and people I need to see and meet. I am learning such a lot about myself, about people and about God. We are all the same. We all want to have a place to stay, food to eat and clothes to wear and we all just want to be happy. I see that everywhere. How you make that happen is the thing that differs.

I have spent more than a week observing the Maasai in their natural environment and it simply blows my mind. They seem very poor, but they are not. They measure wealth by the number of cattle they have and I will tell you, some of them are very, very, very wealthy. A Maasai might live in a mud house and have no car, but his herd is numbered in hundreds and sometimes thousands. So, again I ask: according to whose standard is someone wealthy or poor?? They seem very happy to me. And they all have cellphones.

I am continuing to travel as God leads. This is a magnificent trip, but it is extremely challenging. Many days I just want to go home, but I know there is only one way and that is the way forward. I truly have many challenges, but I see them all as part of the adventure. I will tell you this, I will keep my grandkids busy for hours with all the stories I have to tell. And this is what it is about. The people He loves and the stories we can tell each other about His goodness, as the goodness of God will lead men to repentance.

I am still in awe of this magnificent, holy God. I have known Him and for 39 years. He has never ceased to amaze me. I learn every day!!

May God continue to bless you all and may people continue to hear God’s voice in your voice.

Serengeti splendour

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