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Pole to Pole

Day 105: Kigoma

Michael Palin - Pole to PoleAnother day to kill before the ferry leaves. Take a boat to Ujiji, a few miles down the coast. Once the centre of a thriving slave trade, it's also the place where Livingstone and Stanley met in 1871.

The location of this historic meeting is now a small museum in a well-tended garden on a hill above the busy waterfront. A forbidding, lumpish grey monument, 'erected by the Government of Tanganyika Territory' in 1927, stands beneath two mango trees said to be descendants of the one under which Livingstone and Stanley met. On it is carved a map of Africa with a cross incised into it. It's a brutal and arrogant image. The only visitor besides ourselves is an Englishman from Leicester, looking very red and unprotected in the sun. He is in his fifties and had decided, after reading a book about Cecil Rhodes's plan for a railway from the Cape to Cairo, to do the journey himself. Today he had only one thing on his mind.

'All I'm looking for, Michael, is a cold beer.' I suggest he makes for the Railway Hotel, Kigoma.
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PALIN'S GUIDES

  • Series: Pole to Pole
  • Day: 105
  • Country/sea: Tanzania
  • Place: Kigoma
  • Book page no: 236

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