We skirted around Dar es Salaam and soon arrived at Mikadi Beach, where we are camping tonight. We pitched our tents on the fine sand and marveled at a stunning view of the tropical palms stretching towards the crystal clear waves of the Indian Ocean. After suffering through the sweltering heat and humidity of the ride through Dar es Salaam, I headed towards the water for a refreshing swim. The color of the sea is a vibrant turquoise, and the depth is shallow enough to stand with my head above the gentle waves even when swimming quite far out. But the most stunning quality of the water is the temperature. It is as warm as bathwater – almost hot – and is easily the warmest ocean I have ever experienced.
After dinner, we all spent the evening at the bar sipping tropical drinks and attempting to play pool on a shoddy, sloping table. I retired to my tent around midnight, listening to the sound of dance music from the bar harmonizing with the rhythmic beating of the waves. After the bar closed, the only sounds that remained to complement the enduring melody of the Indian Ocean were the wind rustling through the palm leaves and occasional, almost rain-like gusts of sand blowing gently against the walls of my tent.