rideTZ | day seven

day seven began with a visit to an incredible orphanage, irente children's home, which is run by simon's grandmother, sister enna (simon is the 16-year-old TFFT student, who was selected to ride this year).  irente children's home is not only a most-beautiful, loving orphanage, it also manages an incredible training program for young women, who are interested in becoming matrons of orphanages. the orphanage was followed by a visit to simon's grandfather's house. simon's grandfather was a tanzania hospital administrator for over 30 years.  he's now almost blind and sadly, battling cancer. before we left, simon's grandfather gave such a moving speech about the gift that TFFT has given to his grandson.

the riders experienced lots of ups and downs this day, as they cycled through the heart of the mountain -- ending the day's ride at mkuzu creek resort.

sister enna not only provided us with a tour of her orphanage, she also served us a delicious mid-morning snack (samosas, popcorn, banana, water and tea).

we then proceeded on to visit simon's grandfather's house, where we had lunch.

the guys preparing our lunch.

most of the rest of the ride was beautiful, lush and green -- down the mountain.


our campsite at mkuzu creek resort.



let rideTZ begin

it's raining, which should make a very interesting start. RIDETZ starts today. riders will bike about 35-45 miles each day -- from kilimanjaro to the indian ocean. so excited. can't believe the day is here. DAY THREE all the riders arrived switched to a most-amazing hotel photographed at an absolutely incredible and inspiring orphanage (see more below) RIDETZ briefings awesome dinner together, with all the riders

montonyok children's home was started by a husband and wife (now in their 60s). emi and ndemno are two of the most amazing and giving people i have ever met. it all started with bringing one child into their two-room home.  and ever since, their house and their children have continued to grow, now currently housing 40 orphans. ndemno farms for a living and their land is incredible. they have chickens and goats. they a massive rain water collector and solar panels on one of their buildings. they convert manure into methane (which they use to cook with) and fertilizer. everything is so clean, well-maintained and organized. the children all sleep in two bedrooms (a total of 8 beds). emi and ndemno know the importance of education and have hired a teacher to teach the older children and they're working to get a formal school established on their grounds. they showed us the classroom and had the children sing 'amazing grace', which was absolutely beautiful and had me in tears. emi and ndemno are such special people, as is their orphanage and all the children there!! we're heading back to matonyok after RIDETZ.  i'll be bringing them some of the donated items and taking more photographs.

this is the part of the house, where it all began

this little girl spells her name the same way i do

this little guy is four-years-old and weighs 12 kilograms. he just learned to walk four months ago.  when the orphanage received him, he was extremely malnourished weighing only four kilograms.

last but not least, getting the bikes ready yesterday evening