In the background on Zanzibar’s farms

Scan-130429-0006 - Copy (2)

One of the must-do tours if you visit Zanzibar is a trip around the island’s spice and fruit farms. Hari our guide was intent that we should taste everything we saw growing, so here he is bargaining with a farmer for a ready-to-eat bunch of bananas. You can see the banana grove in the top left corner. Banana branches are usually harvested when the fruit is still green. There’s a knack of knowing just when to cut them.

Being a nosy writer who is always in need of background detail, and also a one-time student of cultural anthropology, I try to capture slice-of-life moments whenever I can. They’re usually not the best quality photos, but I hope to make up for technical shortcomings with content interest. (And yes it would be nice to have both). So here is my take on this week’s Thursday’s Special challenge from Paula – ‘in the background’. My choice of subject, however, did mean I had to switch my blog snow off. There’s enough climate change going on without having icy precipitation on Zanzibar.


This farming family has a jackfruit orchard, as well as coconut palms. The jackfruit apparently weren’t ready for tasting, but I was anyway more distracted by the presence of the domesticated Muscovy duck. Now how did that arrive in the tropics? The mabati iron sheets on the farm house roof  (i.e. instead of traditional palm thatch) are a sign of  prosperity, and therefore of status.



Scan-130429-0010 - Copy (2)

I’m wondering where this little girl is off to in such a hurry. Also one of the reasons why I’m showing off the tall trees in the background is that if you intend to make a living from them, then someone has to climb up them to pick the fruit…

Scan-130429-0074 - Copy

Thursday’s  Special: In the background