The Group

Aaron Franczek, Collin Hartman,Monica Kling, Sarah Meleski, Claire Pattison, Amanda Schmidt, Becca Scholz, Alyssa Stuiber, Becky Thorn, Ryan Treviranus, Gracie Ventura Haas, Marcie Weiss, Jenny White, Robert Bhatia, Jill Braasch, Jenni Herrick and Laine Philippa

Thursday, May 24, 2012

The Trip to Tanzania by Aaron Franczek

Our plane to Amsterdam
We were scheduled to leave Cardinal Stritch University at 12:30 in the afternoon. However, we had a situation that delayed us approximately 15 minutes. Collin Hartman realized that he had accidentally taken an old, expired passport instead of his current one. After several minutes of searching for it in his luggage, it could not be found. Because the group needed to get to the airport in Chicago soon, Jenni Herrick decided that Collin would have to go home to find his current passport, and meet the group in Chicago. After only about five minutes after the group left, Collin called Jenni, informing her that he had now found the proper passport. So the shuttle to the airport took a quick detour to the Home Depot on Port Washington Rd. to reunite with Collin. The group arrived at the airport at about 2:20 p.m. on time and with no other situations. When asked to comment about the incident, Collin said he was nervous about not finding his passport before the flight left Chicago.

At 3:20 p.m. we all began boarding the plane to Amsterdam, Holland, where we would have a layover before another flight to Tanzania. On the plane, we met some interesting people with interesting stories. Some Stritch people were surrounded by students from Viterbo University, another Franciscan University near LaCrosse, Wisconsin and a soccer rival of Stritch. This group, we discovered, was traveling to Italy for a service trip. Collin sat next to one of these students. She was a young woman who had never flown before. She told Collin that she had recently had a Rosary tattooed on her body. Her parents did not approve, but she remarked that the tattoo was a good decision because if the plane went down, at least they would go down with Jesus. I sat next to a college student from Iowa. She was traveling to Madrid for an internship for a Spanish fashion magazine.

At 6:44 a.m., or 11:44 p.m. Central time, we arrived safely in Amsterdam. We had a two hour layover at the Amsterdam airport. Many of us took the opportunity to go shopping at the airport shops. Marcie Weiss found some Mars Bars. This was special for her because her friend Ryan Treviranus, who is also a participant on this trip, calls her "Mars Bars" as a nickname. The two decided that, because of this, they would have to eat Mars Bars together sometime, but could never find any. Now she finally had, and she and Ryan finally were able to eat them together.

We boarded the plane to Tanzania in two hours. I couldn't get to know the people next to me on this flight because they only spoke German. The trip continued with only one more minor incident. I don't even think many people know that this happened. The plane landed in Kilimanjaro, Tanzania and then was scheduled to continue on to Dar Es Salaam, where we would disembark. I didn't realize this and accidentally got off the plane in Kilimanjaro. Unable to find any Stritch students once I got off the plane, I panicked, then realized Stritch was supposed to get off at the next stop. With a little embarrassment, I reboarded the plane only a minute or two after I got off, hoping they would let me back on.

Eventually we landed in Dar Es Salaam and disembarked. I lost track of time, so I have no idea really at what time this was, but it was in the early night. The air was hot, but not uncomfortably so. It had a distinct scent,--sweet and spicy. It sounds weird, but the best way, I think, to describe it is as mildly spicy pie dough.

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