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alone for the weekend

TANZANIA | Sunday, 13 May 2012 | Views [1357] | Comments [10]

Black and White monkey- very rare to see and I saw MANY!

Black and White monkey- very rare to see and I saw MANY!

You know, sleeping under a mosquito net is quite cozy. The way my legs look, I wish I walked under a mosquito net! They really love the taste of my mzungu blood. I'm alone for the weekend. The other volunteers have their 3 day safari planned so I said goodbye to them Friday morning (after a night out on the town, which was fun!) then took a nap. I leisurely walked over to the nursery and it looks like they close up shop early on Fridays. But there were a few muslim children that I recognized (and they obviously recognized me as they took a full sprint to say hello). Thwaipa, one of my favorite girls, looked so cute in her colorful dress, out of her uniform. I played with them for a bit. Read them some of their English books they were carrying around, and handed out stickers while I counted in Swahili. I haven't been feeling well- the teacher has a cold and many of the kids are sick. One of the boys, Jusuph, threw up three times in class. Poor little guy. But I only have a sore throat and it seems to have just turned into a cold (so, mom, I'm fine, don't worry :).

It's so quiet here without the others. The cook doesn't cook dinner on Fridays so two of the women asked if I wanted to join them for dinner. We had a traditional dish, Ugali. They showed me how to eat it with my hands. Basically, it's a maize powder and oil mash and beef with vegetables. It's funny- there was a big basket of what looked like leaves off a tree. I asked what it was and they said "vegetables". Not like any vegetable I know. It pretty much ends up tasting like collared greens. I like it. The women were sweet. Hidije and Cecy. Cecy said her dream is to have a mzungu baby. I laughed and asked her why. She said she liked the way mzungu babies looked and wanted one hahaa.... I suppose it's just like us and our fascination with the little dark skinned babes.

Saturday I got to do a safari all by myself! Just me and my guide Godlove. I love the names out here. We took a one day safari to Arusha park and I saw Giraffe, Zebra, Buffalo, Warthog and monkeys. Was fun! Not much to do on a Saturday night unless I want to venture out alone and take a cab. The streets are dark and so is everything in between. I was tired anyway so I just walked to the market and purchased some vinegar for my bites to see if it would help with the itch (it didn't) as well as buy some chocolate for Hidije. She was very happy. The markets are basically just closets with a few items on the shelf, unless I would walk to the big market in town. I was surprised I found the vinegar. It took a couple of shops to find chocolate. I met a little boy running the store named Banku and he spoke English really well. He couldn't have been more than 10. I purchased all the pencils he had and he said "I never had to count all of them". It was so cute. He had 20 and it cost me only 2000tsh (about $1.20). Back at the house I read some of my book and went to bed early. I asked Cecy if I could go to church with her and she said yes but she goes at 6:30 am and could I get up early? haha well I didn't sleep much because I worried about not getting up, and then it was raining and I decided to not go anyway. Dark and raining don't mix for me. So I left her a note and went back to bed.

I awoke again at about 8:30. Had breakfast. Attempted to clean up. Not only is there no hot water but the water only works sporadically. Sucks when you can't flush the toilet for a few hours:). I decided today would be a walking adventure. I walked about 30 minutes to a large catholic church "Christ the King Cathedral". I walked in, was the only mzungu. The whole service was in swahili so I just stood up, kneeled and sat when they did. The singing was beautiful but the service was just as boring as Catholic services I've attended in the U.S. haha. I hear many bible churches singing clapping right around our home all day too. There are many churches here, both Muslim and Christian. The women dress so well. Very colorful. I made sure to wear my sarong as a long skirt and have longer sleeves. Man it's hot. But the long skirt does ward off some mosquitoes.

After that, I walked into town to get some groceries for lunch and pick up a few items for the kids. I have to make sure I don't buy so much as it's a long walk home and it gets heavy. I almost feel like a local walking around alone. I have to figure things out for myself for sure. I'm so grateful that I have a good sense of direction!

Right now I'm off to the Coffee Shop to try some African coffee and buy some treats. Then home to greet my fellow travelers back from Safari. Tomorrow we start another week of school. I'm more prepared now and feel capable of teaching a full class. I've posted a few more photos, so please take a look and leave some comments! It's good to get comments from my friends and family, as I really do feel pretty disconnected from the rest of the world. :)

Kwaheri! Asante sana

Tags: arusha, children, safari, volunteering

Comments

1

I'm thinking at this point you probably won't want to stay there the rest of your life:). The check I sent you was returned to me. I'll check with you when you get back for your correct address. Be safe, hope you're protected from malarya (sp). Love you, dad

  Bob Dunn May 14, 2012 9:23 AM

2

Hi Christine, love reading your blog. Your dad gave me your blog, hope you don't mind. I think you are very brave to do this mostly by yourself. I know when we were in Italy, you sort of feel isolated mainly because of language. Will pray for your sore throat and bites, UGH!! Bless you for doing this. Love to you, Glenda

  Glenda Worrell May 14, 2012 9:56 AM

3

CHRISTINE!!! We miss you! Even though you've only been gone just over a week, it seems like much longer. Your adventures sound priceless and amazing. We love the blog and all the terrific photos. For my birthday, please bring back one Tanzanian child and a baby zebra. I will be a good Mom to both. Keep the stories and photos coming! I posted the link to your blog on Yammer on Friday. Love from LA, Shelley

  Shelley May 15, 2012 2:31 AM

4

Hi Chris, I always look forward to hearing from you so we all can get an update on your happenings. Hope all is well with you. If you have more pics, they would be fun to see. Hope your last week in Tanzania is fantastic. Love you. Mom

  Joy Dunn May 15, 2012 10:55 PM

5

Hi Kwith,
We definitely appreciate you taking the time to blog. It helps that you are a good writer too ;) I can totally see everything you're describing. I'm sure you'll get bombarded with calls/email when you return. I'll be one of them. This is one of those adventures you'll never forget. Love you sis! Praying for health, safety and joy in your last week.
Yo Brudda, Maphew

  Yo Brudda May 16, 2012 3:16 AM

6

Haven't heard from you in a few days. Are you ok? Love getting your posts so we can hear about what you are doing. Love you, Mom

  Joy Dunn May 16, 2012 10:43 PM

7

what an amazing weekend! Just to be walking around as if thats home! WOW! lol... I have always loved living vicariously thru you! You take me on the best trips =) I love you just so much sometimes I just cant take it =) you are the bestest bestest ever! Have so much fun this last week! soak it alllll up!

  Sperry May 17, 2012 4:30 AM

8

Hey everyone! Thanks for the comments. I haven't felt like being in an Internet cafe the last couple of days but I'm ok! Will try to update you tomorrow. I have volunteering in the morning but we are sneaking off to some hot springs in the afternoon. :)

  Christine May 17, 2012 4:43 AM

9

ooo... fun! hot springs! take pix if you can!

  Sperry May 18, 2012 2:00 AM

10

Love the blog!!! I can almost visualize the scene. Thanks for being so descriptive in your stories. I am choking up a lot in your blog entries because it is really making me miss Africa. Hot springs! That sounds great! Hey! hot water! Just kidding. Can't wait to hear more...

  Lexie May 18, 2012 3:13 AM

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