Mixing Pleasure with Business: Back from Tanzania

It’s been almost a week since my return from my first business trip. You might remember that I had set myself a clear mission for those three weeks in Tanzania – to find some free time to explore. Well, that proved to be more difficult than expected. In fact, I ended up working 5 days worth of overtime – 6 days, if you count Saturdays as double time – and rarely had time for anything other than working, sleeping and eating.During my first week in Dar-es-Salaam, the only sights I saw were the hotel dining area and the inside of the office building where I was working. It was very disheartening.

But when the weekend arrived, I decided that I needed to do something about this sorry state of affairs. Although a colleague had advised me not to go out exploring on my own, the thought of sitting in the hotel all weekend watching TV was just too unbearable. That impulsive decision turned into a memorable day out, which I will write about in the near future – it involved a whirlwind taxi tour of the city, an improptu Swahili lesson and a trip in a wooden dhow to an island just off the coast of Tanzania.

I’m very glad that I had the opportunity to do some exploring at least, because the next Monday I took a chartered plane to a mine site where I was stranded for the last two weeks without a chance to see anything else. I won’t complain (too much!), because the point of a business trip is, after all, to work, so I’m grateful that I did manage to see something at least. Which is more than my colleagues who visited the other sites were able to do. And I can now say that Tanzania is definitely a country I would like to see more of in future…

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