9/30/09: Meserani Snake Park in Arusha, Tanzania
We spent most of today driving from Nairobi to Arusha, Tanzania. We’re camping tonight at the Meserani Snake Park before we get up early tomorrow morning and head to the Serengeti. Now just stop and think for a minute. We are camping outdoors at a campsite that calls itself the Meserani SNAKE PARK. I don’t know about you, but I think these guys need to hire a new public relations person. Because really, I think a swimming pool and satellite TV would be a bigger draw.
Anyway, it turns out that the snakes at the campsite are actually in glass displays, not wandering around the tents looking for people to bite. I was quite relieved when I found that out. The campsite is owned and run by two Aussies who also opened a free clinic for the local Masai people. So guess what kinds of ailments the Masai coming to the clinic have? Colds? Pneumonia? Malaria? Nope. Snake bites. (And also burns from falling into fires.) The purpose of the long display of snakes is actually so the Masai who come to the clinic can point out which snake they were bitten by. I thought that was pretty clever, and apparently so do the area hospitals, because they often refer their snake bite patients to the Meserani Snake Park clinic. The only thing is – if you go to the hospital with a deadly snake bite and they refer you to a clinic that’s an hour away, is that really helping things or is it hurting things?
They also have crocodiles at the snake park. I guess the Aussies have a penchant for deadly animals.
Picture of the Day: Mr. Turtle and I are millionaires in Tanzania