We had planned to breeze through Tanzania in as short a time as possible, as we had planned to return to explore the country properly in a few weeks time. We were unsure of the conditions of the road we were to travel on, and had heard conflicting reports of it being impassable (especially in the wet season) and others that is was just simply challenging, but we had decided to give it a go anyway and would eventually find out ourselves. At worst it would mean backtracking for a couple of days and taking the long way round through the East of Tanzania, possibly delaying us a week.We spent the next 3 days sitting in the car for 10-12hrs each day. It was tiring, painful and boring. Karens back had also begun giving her some serious grief and it was progressively getting worse as the days went on. The dirt road was in dire need of maintenance, it was almost always corrugated and potholed and there were stretches that were deeply rutted, eroded or holding water. The road was in terrible condition but it was not impassable. We passed the occasional vehicle, generally a truck of some description and more often than not, broken down on the side of the road.The scenery as we drove was mind numbingly monotonous (this may have been due to our dull mindset created by the woeful road conditions) and alternated between miombo woodland, plantation forest and little else. We did however have a short 2hr stint through the Katavi National Park that sparked us up a little, not in the least because of the swarms of indestructible Tsetse flies (giant disease carrying flies similar to march/horse flies back home) that kept flying into the car. At times we must have looked like a pack of retarded Bavarian dancers, slapping away on our heads arms and legs. The park was not laden with animals like Kruger, but we did manage to see a few elephant and giraffe and some fresh cat tracks that most likely belonged to a pride of lions.We stopped twice overnight enroute, firstly at the small town of Sumbawanga and secondly at a rustic little campsite on the edge of the Katavi National Park at Sitalike.Sumbawanga was a typical little no frills African town, and Karen and I spent a hour wandering the streets late one afternoon before popping in to a local bar for a quick drink. The people in the town were a friendly bunch, most likely surprised to see mzungus in these parts, but it was quickly becoming obvious to us that although English was one of the official languages of Tanzania, in this part of the country minimal people could speak or understand it. This came as a surprise to us and we had not expected the communication barrier to be the widest it had been on the adventure so far. In Mozambique we had struggled at times, but with a bit of English, Spanish and Portuguese we could usually get our point across, whereas here the dialect was so different, we could rarely understand anything but hello and mzungu.We found ourselves a nice little hotel for the first night and without the tourist influence (the town was mainly a truck stop) the accommodation was an absolute bargain at $10 including breakfast. The only downside was that there was a nightclub situated right next door and the music was pumping at deafening levels, but thankfully it was blue light disco night and by bedtime the masses had been cleared out. On arrival at the hotel we had a humerous experience, we asked about secure parking and they nodded and took us round the back to open some gates. It was then we realised that the nightclub doubled as a parking lot, and so we just drove straight into the middle of the disco and parked. We gathered our stuff whilst the teenagers gave us some vacant stares, and although we set the alarm, if it had sounded we never would have heard it.Tonight was the final of the African Nations Cup and I was really looking forward to the game. We'd settled in at the hotel bar, but right on queue when the game was just about to start, the power went out. Perhaps the whole town had overloaded the grid as they turned their TVs on to watch the game, but I just shook my head and went to bed. The power eventually came back on and the TV in our room sprung to life, so I did manage to see the last 3 minutes.We camped our second night on the edge of Katavi NP and right beside a small river boasting a number of large hippos. Throughout the night we could hear the hippos grunting away, a strange sort of sound kind of like a deep evil laugh you expect from some villain in a cartoon. We thought we may get to see the hippos close up and out of the water and they wandered up to feed on the grass near the tents but this was not the case.We set off early the next morning on our way to Kigoma, stopping only at Mpanda to get a few supplies and top up our fuel. We didn't realise at the time but the frantic queue at petrol station was not only due to the bowser having been down, but also the fact that they were about to run out of unleaded at any minute and had already done so with diesel.We topped up and moved on.The drive day was extremely long and when Kigoma got within eyesight, the GPS decided it would take us the long way round and added an extra hour to the trip causing us to arrive in the dark.