The death that hides in the water-Lake Natron, Tanzania

Today, I shall take you on another trip. It will be a long trip. Our destination is Lake Natron in Tanzania.

You will ask, why go so far away? Well, it is because the lake is kind of special, I m not sure if this is in the best way. . as it is special because of the water composition. It is a salt lake similar to the Dead Sea, in the salt aspect and how the water evaporates and leaves the salt and other minerals but also is different because the lake is also highly alkaline, has a lot of natron in( natron is a combination between baking soda and sodium carbonate).

Natron is an old substance that was used in different ways over the years. It was known since ancient Egypt. When it was used as a cleaning product for the house but also for the body. Blended with oil was used as a soap. From natron was also made a kind of mouthwash using natron undiluted. Mixed with other things was used as an early antiseptic for small wounds. Egyptians used natron also in the process of mummification, natron helped in the drying process.

Mixed with castor oil was used to obtain a smokeless fuel that was used by Egyptians to paint the walls of their tombs.

Inside the house it was used as an insecticide repellent, another use was to bleach the leather. Natron was also used as a meat preserver.

Now that I told you a bit about what the substance can do, let’s go back to the lake.

This lake ph.’s is quite high around 10,5 or higher, almost as high as ammonia. Even if the composition of the water makes living in such conditions quite harsh there are still some fishes in the water(Alcolapia latilabris), some algae, and flamingos that feed on the algae. Flamingos like this lake as they are not disturbed.

We can’t go for a swim in this lake because is caustic. The smallest cut we would have or wound that we could have would make us be more in pain because of the water effect on the skin.

During the dry season when the water is lower a lot of bird’s bodies are coming out of water. They are quite well preserved as you can see on the picture below in the link: https://www.smithsonianmag.com/science-nature/this-alkaline-african-lake-turns-animals-into-stone-445359/

In the link above, you can see photos of the bird that died and were conserved by the lake water. They look creepy and in a way alive.

The temperature in the lake is around 60 Celsius degrees, a swim for some animals can be fatal and lead to death and a calcified well-preserved body.

The lake can have a pin-red color because of the bacteria that are living inside the lake and feed with salt.

So let’s have a walk and enjoy the view!

Here is a video that I found on YouTube about the lake. You can heave a look: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=SML8K3WQfPY

Rusalii -the beauty of a dream

Today I shall take you for a walk in a forest we shall go near Bucharest were is a little pond where witches are supposed to come, we can hunt treasures as today is a big day.

In this Sunday will be 50 days since Easter, for many that means the day when the Holy Spirit came on earth and the apostles started to convert more people to Christianity. Also today in my country we also celebrate a Roman holiday named Rusalli. So take my hand and let me tell you their story. Rusalii are some beautiful women, they are supposed to be the daughters of Rusalim Emperor, for some a personification of Jerusalem, others says that the Rusalii are just some beautiful girls with magic powers. In any version they are known to be bad if you upset them. They like to dance in the forests, and those that see them get enchanted by their beauty and their dance so enchanted that the only way to bring back that person is to let Calusarii( every year in some areas of my country there will be a group or 13 men who will dance this traditional dance in this time, the dance is know to bring good luck but also to help those that were enchanted by the Rusalii)  dance on him or her. 

Where the Rusalli are dancing the grass will get black, and if any mortal is watching will be punished.Some say’s that the herbs are healing in this time until July when is another holiday as this one. On the Rusalii people put all kind of green leaves on doors some even put garlic to keep the bad spirits away. The green are supposed  to bring good luck .

I know is dangerous to have this walk so if you afraid to come and walk with me here you can go I will have this by myself. For women should be less dangerous, the Rusalii prefer men more than women. But if you are not afraid than grab my hand and lets go. 

We can feel the grass, feel how relaxing is to walk even if is quite dark, can you feel the smell of linden tree? Is so powerful. There you can also feel the smell of water, can you ?

Yes I thought that you feel it.

Come close to the pound we shall find a spot on the grass near the water to just stay and enjoy. 

In this night we might also maybe see some flames as is a big night, the flames of a treasure might also appear or we might have the good luck, or bad luck to meet the white dressed girls, the Rusalii.

Is so quiet, you can hear the wind and also some where in the dark I think is a little frog as I can hear .

Mmm there is a strange sweet smell can you feel it ? It doesn’t seem to be from a linden tree.. is so sweet and the air seems so hmm bit strange ..

Are you a bit scared that we might meet the beautiful girls?

Talking about beautiful girls, do hear that noise ?

It seems we are not quite  alone, can you hear them.We are clearly not alone, the wind started to be stronger and also the sweet smell. There is something white can you see? Right there near the tree… Looks like a human, shh keep quiet.

Yes, we see good there are… they look like beautiful women indeed, so beautiful and with such white dresses, they seem like fireflies, they are lighted. They seem so beautiful and they dance so beautiful. I just feel so drown to them to go and dance with them. Can you hear them, they sing, so nice like they are from heaven. If I did’t knew they can be dangerous I would go to dance with them. 

What are you doing? Stay down they will see us!

Where do you think you will go ? You can’t go to them, can you hear me?

No way, you got enchanted by their song, you can’t go to them to dance with them . That’s to dangerous, don’t go please. 

Wait! You forget they are the evil and they can punish you, I took you here not to go to them. 

But even if I beg, he goes away, and they see him, they still dance and sing so nice.. so nice that I’ m so tempted to go to join them. He is near now, and I can’t stop him, they now see him, one is taking his hand, he grabs her and starts to sing like them. He is to enchanted.  He is dancing with them, I feel so drown to them. I try to resist the feeling..

Try to not go, now they seem to be floating not dancing and wind feels so good.  It is strange how I know is not good to go but my curiosity is so big to just see them a bit closer.

Just to have a grasp of them … I can’t resist the feeling I need to see them closer no matter what. So I m going to them, to dance with them to feel their hands in mine to float with them. Oh they saw me, they call me, they know my name. Here I come to dance with you to discover your mysteries…

Mmm I feel so tired, I can hear the birds singing it seems is morning, I’m near a pound and a forest it seems I got asleep here… in the middle of nowhere, I can’t remember to much, I do have a strong head ache. It seems I’m alone, even if I remember well last night I wasn’t.  I think I dreamed about the Rusalii ?! They were so beautiful and they dance so nice, they were like floating and I think I dreamed that they took me with them. We were flying ?! We got in another forest, a forest where I never been before was full of long trees and there were many big stones. Than they showed me a cave, we enter inside, they were smiling. They showed me a treasure, I think there were big boxes with all kind of golden things. There were rubies, sapphires  and all kind of stones. They smiled and show me their treasure, there were also some books, they seemed so old, they were in skin covered, but wait there in corners were some skeletons.. Those skeletons were wearing some jewelry. The rest of the dream I can’t remember. But wait what I have on my neck, this is not my necklace… so I wasn’t dreaming… 

I hope you like my fantasy story, the beginning of the story is the real traditions that we have on there day, also the dance with Calusarii, I will tell you in another trip more about them. For now, I hope you liked my story…