My first week in Dar, I met one of Mike’s coworkers Drew at lunch. When it came up that I liked to dance, he said that one of his friends, Karen, teaches hip hop here. (!) So I got really excited and we were introduced over email. I went to her class at Nanasi (in Oysterbay Shopping Center) and we found out we had so much in common…almost too much in common! Both Chinese and from LA, both went to Berkeley, both were president of Danceworx at Berkeley…she was just 3 years after me. Craziness! And to meet in Dar, of all places. She’s currently in the middle of her two year fellowship here with the CDC. Anyway, class was a lot of fun but I did take it with probably an 11 year old and a 14 year old. Hehe. So maybe I will try teaching once I get settled here.
Anyway, Karen and I bonded and we decided to go get Chinese food. She mentioned that there was a good one downtown since I asked her if there were any good Chinese restaurants here. She lives in Upanga, which is a neighborhood closer to town and popular with younger people. Her apartment building complex is huge and really really nice. We would definitely consider this if we were working downtown, but it’ll probably be easiest to stay on the Peninsula.
We went to the restaurant downtown with her coworker Lindsay. It’s called Tai Huo San Zhuang Restaurant, which roughly translates into Sun and Mountain Seafood Restaurant. The restaurant is on Jamhuri St. right next to the police post (it’s actually on Google Maps!). When we went in, it was a smoke filled place—ahh…feels like I’m back in China. But the restaurant was definitely filled with Chinese people! There is actually a large Chinese population here. They are all here building the roads and buildings since China is investing heavily in Africa. The menu seemed pretty Americanized, but Karen and I could make out some of the Chinese to order some “usuals.” We got Sichuan beef, hong shao tofu, vegetable in bird’s nest, and a chicken mi fun (rice noodles). It was all really good! I was impressed. Good Chinese food in Dar. Sichuan beef and the tofu were my favorites. Hong shao just means “red-cooked” which means you have soy sauce, sugar, star anise, and rice wine.
I’m mad at myself because I was so distracted by the food that I forgot to take pictures until it was all gone. Oops! Next time. But I did manage to take a photo as we were leaving the restaurant. =)