Going shopping at the market in Arusha


We need food for lunch and dinner so we decide to visit the general market. A market is a market, it goes without saying, but the general market of Arusha is something more. Arusha is a gigantic open-air market in itself, as I had the occasion of writing before. The general market is the condensation of what you can find outside.

Everything is piled and crushed: space has another meaning here. The corridors are REALLY narrow and goods are kept on big tables and shelves. To get lost is not that difficult, but if you go there to do your shopping you don’t care so much.

Fruit and vegetable sellers are the most common, then dried legumes and rice in large rope baskets.

Few people know that these ropes are a typical Tanzanian product from the region of Tanga. During last century, huge plantations of sisal covered all the territory around the city of Tanga and almost all the people living there were engaged in the cultivation of this plant and in the production of ropes and baskets. It was a very flourishing commerce until plastic with its low prices came. The demand for this product collapsed, many people lost their jobs and the area lost much of its splendor.

Let’s go back to the market. Every seller try to capture your attention. ‘Karibu’ (welcome), ‘Habari?’ (how are you?), while you go on walking until you enter another part of the market, the meat and fish section. The smell is almost unbearable: sweet and nauseating where tons of chickens wait to be sold, acrid and pungent where fish is kept. A singular sort of fish, so small, dried and salted. I don’t know if I am so brave as to taste it.;)

A last look to check if we bought everything we needed and we stop for a splendid watermelon that Moody has chosen among dozens.

We are ready to go: lunch and dinner have been organized. We’ll be back soon.;);)

Arusha in deep