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Thursday, December 3, 2009

Meeting Travelers - Canadian Spender

Sometimes, along your trip, you meet interesting people. Interesting, because it's different from what you are doing. I have a few stories up my sleeve.

In Arusha Backpackers Hotel I met a Canadian guy. He was about to travel around. He just finished his studies as kinesiotherapist. The cool looking guy was in Tanzania for a bunch of weeks or months. I forgot. He worked at a primary school as a teacher, in Arusha. He was teaching English and Science. A week after his arrival at the school they made him vice-principal of the school. He must have done something good! He was not educated to be a teacher, but everybody with an education and some knowledge is better than no teacher ;-) But I'm sure he did a great job.

He also put his heart into his work. Teaching the kids discipline happened with a cane or equivalent. Something that sounds medieval to us right now. He manage to ban physical disciplination from the school. How? He threatened the other teachers and school staff to leave if they continued their practices. They were apparently so happy with him and so afraid that he would leave, that they abandoned physical punishment of children. You can make some change! Let's hope they stick to it... (without a stick)

By the way, I provided him with the phone number of a Scottish guy I met some days earlier. He wanted to contact him, but did not have his number. What are the odds that I happen to know that particular Scottish guy that also happened to know him? And get his number? Well. That's the way it works.

The rest of his story was rather sad. But good at the same time. He had saved money before his trip to climb Mount Meru or Mount Kilimanjaro. A costly expedition. But now, when his school job finished, when he started his traveling around Tanzania: no Kilimanjaro, no Meru. He did not have enough money left...

What happened? He spent too much money. On school supplies for the kids. And especially on the Big Day he organized. Kind of a sports day for the school. So he bought equipment so the children could play and sport. He also bought prizes for the children. You need to give the winners something, right? Especially if you are North American. It turned out to be a great day. All the children enjoying things and games they otherwise would never do. Happy children. And equipment left for the school. Happy Canadian guy.

For me, the guy already climbed a bigger mountain than Kilimanjaro. I could not think of a nobler shitty excuse to not have enough money to climb Kili...

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