January 10, 1951
Tonight I’m rather at loose ends as to what to do so I guess that this is as good a time as any to get a few lines off to you and yours. As yet we haven’t arrived at Zanzibar but we should be getting there soon. I believe that I have written to you before on this journey but I can’t remember where or when it was, so if I repeat in this you’ll know that I’ve had a lapse of memory.
I no doubt have said that this has been a wonderful trip. We spent a week at Mombasa, and now we’ve been about four days at Dar-es-Salaam. We should have left there yesterday. We got all ready to leave at 4:30 but they couldn’t get the anchor up so we had to stay a day. It seems that the chains were twisted some way and so we had to wait for the tide at 4:30 today. So I suppose that we shall be slow or late in getting to our destination, Beira.
Tomorrow we are booked for a 30-mile tour on Zanzibar to see all of the sights. I understand that it is a very interesting place. We’ll see Mohammedism in its real form there, although I’ve seen plenty ever since Egypt and Arabia. Here in British East Africa one sees many natives all donned in black, head and most of their face, if not all, covered. How awful to see it.
Dar-es-Salaam is a beautiful African town or city – I don’t know which. This bay is beautiful. We saw lovely European homes. I guess the Europeans have plenty of money there. Also there is a huge native population as well as 20,000 Indians plus hordes of Arabs. We visited the native section today. It was very interesting. The natives here have their own businesses, more so than where I come from.
Well, it really has been marvelous to see all that we have seen and now stark reality will soon be facing us and all of this must come to an end.
They have oodles of palm trees in this section of Africa. They say at Zanzibar things are cheap, but guess that I won’t be buying much. We won’t be there very long. We should be getting into Beira Saturday night or Sunday and by Monday or Tuesday we should be in Salisbury.
I had Winifred cut my hair. It was getting too long and in this heat and humidity I couldn’t keep it looking decent at all. It is much better now. I’m going to aim to keep it short from now on.
I suppose that I’ll have plenty of work to do once I get to Msengedzi. School begins the 23rd, so I won’t get there much too soon; if in time I’ll be fortunate. Setting up house, etc., plus letters galore to write. I hope that I have some when I get there. Maybe I’ll be able to send you a few snaps after I get my film developed.
Hello to the girls. I trust that you are all well. Excuse this terrible pen plus paper. I had a letter from Mom and one from Ila and Lois when I reached Mombasa. Was so good to hear again.