We’ve reached four months of my time in Tanzania & I unexpectedly went to a concert with Africa's most prominent artist.
First, let’s bring it right back. As previously mentioned, Mwanza is a region in the North of Tanzania right next to the heart of the River Nile, Lake Victoria. The scene in Mwanza is popping.
On the concert day, I was fortunate enough to see a glimpse of the Kariakoo derby, Yanga vs Simba. Two teams with deep ties in the history of the country. The atmosphere was different, and I couldn’t describe the visceral euphoria in the region. Vuvuzela on steroids.
Mwanza has a lively City Center. However, the suburbs are beautiful, giving village-type vibes. The contrast in scenery hit me differently. I didn’t stay in Mwanza, but it is a region I’d like to explore.
Now onto the concert.
I’m not a big Diamond fan, but once my wife found out that he’ll be performing in Mwanza, we looked to buy tickets and explore whether the hype was real. My experience with concerts [for context, I’ve never been to a concert, only one festival] is that the leading performers are never as good as their audio/visual recorded music, which make sense since it’s hard to replicate music video-type performances when you can perform several takes.
We bought tickets classed as VIP, but we were supposed to have a high table but didn’t get one since they were all taken. Still, we got the right location according to our tickets.
For context, there were four different types of tickets; we got the third most expensive one. The two other tickets above ours had nice perks like your own dining table, which included your selection of alcohol and dinner. My wife, cousins, and I don’t drink, so it didn’t make sense for us to get those tickets.
The cheapest tickets were trash; you were literally at the end of the venue; subsequently, with it being the most affordable, it garnered the most people meaning people were cramped, standing together like a pack of sardines.
Overall the venue was decent.
Before going, everyone warned us that Diamond would probably come out late. The concert started around 21:00, the DJ played decent bangers, and a couple of MCs brought the energy. But once it touched 23:00, my energy levels were depleting, and I wondered what time Diamond would come out to perform.
The dude decided to come out at 01:00. Fun. By this time, dudes around us had already drank like 7/10 bottles. I was astonished by the amount of consumption of alcohol.
I kid you not; when Diamond came out, he bought the 🔥. Before arriving, the DJ invited everyone, excluding those with the cheapest tickets, to come right next to the stage, but most people were hesitant. However, once Diamond came out, he invited everyone, including those ways, back to the venue. Once the security guards pushed the gates aside, the speed at which the people came towards the centre stage was shocking and somewhat scary.
Yet, no doubt, it brought that extra energy to the concert.
Without a shadow of a doubt, Diamond is a top-class performer. His ability to command and maintain the crowd's energy for several hours shocked me. I was already K.O. by his first song, but my wife and cousins were raving. The concert was pretty chill.
Living in London, there was always trepidation going to concerts, shubuz, and carnivals because there was an element of danger due to not knowing who was going and for what purpose.
But TZ was different; people of all ages were at the concert. Bro, someone who looked like my Grandad, was vibing at the concert, which I was happily surprised to see. Everyone seemed relaxed and minding their own business. Security did not F about. One example, a scuffle between two people nearly erupted; the security guards quelled it within minutes. The two dudes were thrown out, no questions asked. Unfortunately, the unwanted touching from men towards women was very active, which wasn’t nice to see.
Overall the concert was 🔥. We left the event around 05:00 AM; I think it continued until 07:00 AM, but we got our fair share of enjoyment.
Would I go again? 🤷🏾♂️
I’m pleased and grateful I had that experience.
Dar Es Salaam
After my time in the North of Tanzania, my wife and I travelled to the unofficial capital of Tanzania - Dar Es Salaam.
For context, my wife and I have hated Dar Es Salaam since we were young. Our previous visits there as children have been filled with chaos, dangers, and overwhelming due to the sheer amount of people & craziness.
So we both believed this would be the worst part of our trip. But I’m happy to say we were utterly wrong.
From the moment we ordered our bolt from the airport, we witnessed the transformation of a city which was once chaotic to one which was orderly in its unique way. As we drove closer to our apartment, we saw beautiful building after building lighting up the night sky; it was a shock to our system to see such a transformation.
Once we reached our Airbnb apartment, our eyes filled with amazement. We left our taxi unsure as to whether it was the right location, as we stopped at a highly tall building with a corporate Esque reception. With our four suitcases and backpacks reviewed, we first wondered whether the building name matched the name on the Airbnb. It did, so we asked the security at reception whether this was our place; they replied yes & requested we check-in.
At this point, I didn’t know what to expect from our apartment. The pictures on Airbnb looked good, but for those who use Airbnb, ain’t nothing 100% from their pictures.
As we opened the apartment door, we were gleaming with happiness. The beauty of the apartment but most satisfying, the view, captured our hearts.
The apartment had three bedrooms with various views of both the port & the whole city—the rest of my time in Tanzania brought great joy. We found a beautiful brunch spot which was always packed with ambassadors from all over the world. I got to have a good walk around the chaotic market of Kariakoo. As well as going to the lovely coast spots; Coco Beach, Masaki, & Sea Cliff.
Dar Es Salaam opened my eyes to another side of Tanzania that I didn’t expect. It was a wonderful surprise that I’m now unable to encapsulate into words. But the city’s uniqueness will live long in the memory. Despite its beauty, I feel it’s a bit much for me to stay long-term, but it’s nice to know there are breathtaking views and beautiful restaurants I can visit anytime.
Thanks, Dar, for the lovely surprise.
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