Sunday, April 27, 2008

just a quick one...

Things are going well ..for the most part.... here in morogoro. The students finished their eight-week exam on friday and most did quite well. We celebrated a few birthdays this week and have had a lot of fun in class.

We had a rough day on thursday when we learned that Anethi one of the English students lost her sister. She had been sick with Malaria for some time and in the village she lives in about 3 hours from here, health care is nearly impossible to get for the few who are able to afford it. There are no hospitals or doctors there and even if there were most couldn't afford to see them. She was a young mother so it's an especially trying situation. Please pray for Anethi and her family.

If you want to help there are several organizations you can find online where you can donate a little money (really, like $10) to get bednets to people who can't afford them. Everyone agrees that this method of prevention is the best treatment for this disease. What most people in the west don't understand is that malaria itself is entirely treatable IF you can afford the treatment. I don't know a single person here who hasn't had it. What kills thousands of people every day is not malaria but poverty.

Sunday, April 20, 2008

It's no vacation!

So in case you’ve been thinking from the last few posts that it’s all fun and games here in Morogoro,’s a “real missionary” blog...

It’s been quite a week!  Last sunday during dinner. There was a loud pop and we saw sparks coming off the corner of the dining room as the power went out.  After some investigation, we found that a bat had flown into the transformer knocking out all the electricity for our base.  Monday morning we woke up to find that we had no running water.  The pump that gets the water from the pipes into the tank is electric so no electricity means no running water.....Sometime THURSDAY Tanesco the electric company decided to classify us as an emergency situation. on SATURDAY they finally showed up.  I was so excited to come home last night to power!!! I got back to the base and walked into my room and turned on the light.... nothing.... I tried

 again.... still nothing.  The only building on the base not restored to normal?  the English school....argh.... 

It’s amazing actually the things you learn how to live with.   Thankfully God was really good and it rained almost every you should have seen us all scrambling to get our buckets under a crack in the rain gutters around the school at the least sign of rain.  And this being the rainy season, even when it didn’t rain, there was enough in the well for us to use for toilets and showers and laundry.

Last weekend, Neema and I took my friend Bebe (in the middle) out to lunch for her birthday!  Bebe is from Rwanda and she arrived shortly after I did.  We’ve suffered through some of the same culture shock and difficulties adjusting to life here in Tanzania.  She’s become a good friend. 

There are three kids here on the base.  Mira is only a couple months old and still kind of boring if you don’t go crazy over babies, but 1 1/2 yr old Abi and her 6 yr old brother Mordecai are absolute stars!  Their parents Isaac and Deborah are some of my favorite people around here and the kids are the sweetest. but the strangest thing??? they took Mordi to the dentist about a week ago and pulled almost ALL his baby teeth... The idea is that they have to get rid of the old ones so that the new ones can come in... I haven't figured out yet whether or not this is normal in TZ or if it was just a crazy dentist but I know one thing.. Mordi has been scarred for life! poor thing.... 

This week marks the halfway point of the English school.. we are struggling a bit. Literally EVERYONE has been sick this week. Malaria, what they call Typhoid here but which is really not, parasites, all sorts of badness.  They are working hard but it's so difficult to pay attention when you are feeling bad.  It's a little overwhelming when I think that I am only two months away from leaving.  Half of me is desperate to get home and the other half is devastated at the thought of leaving.  I know that it will be time for me to be home for awhile and I can't wait to see my family and friends but I really do enjoy life here...It's the problem I face constantly. I sometimes wish I was made to stay put so I wouldn't have to go through leaving people over and over again but I know that the life I would be giving up is too good!  In John 10:10 Jesus says "I came that they may have life and have it abundantly." I know that that is what I am living and experiencing everyday... life abundantly! 

Monday, April 14, 2008

the only lion I saw on safari was this one hanging from the rearview mirror of the minibus we went in.... sorry to disappoint...

Saturday, April 12, 2008

Some SAFARI pics!

this giraffe was just standing by the side of the road posing for us.  

Our guide threw some cookies out the window to get these guys to come close.... Don't tell, we're not allowed to do this, she said... yeah right I'm sure she does it every time....

And last but not least, the elephant that almost sent me to heaven. Let's call him Steve:

Steve was walking down the road that we needed to pass and African elephants can be a bit aggressive!  Our guide told us all to keep our heads and everything inside the vehicle and not to shout andtold the driver to stop and let him pass. Steve moseyed off the road and she told him to go ahead slowly.  This caught Steve's attention and he turned back to us.  At this point just curious and probably a little scared himself.  We stopped.  Steve turned away.  The guide tells the driver "pole pole" (slowly) and our driver probably at once terrified of losing a) his passengers b) his vehicle and thereby his business and c) his life, decides instead to punch it and tears out of there, roaring past Steve who whirls around and trumpets that big elephant noise, sort of bowing like he might just take off after us at a full gallop and skewer us all one after another on his tusks like a shish kebab.  Thankfully he decides that we are no longer a threat to his peaceful afternoon and just watches us go. I could practically hear him saying "yeah.... that's right... and STAY OUT!"


would you believe it?  I'm in Africa and I'm cold!  I mean, we're not talking a New York winter or anything but we've come into the long rainy season.  Being so close to the equator, there's not really spring, summer, fall, and winter like I'm used to.... basically it's just always hot.  But during April the temperatures here drop quite a bit in the evening and it's raining--or threatening to--pretty much all the time.  It's actually kind of nice because it means I can have a rainwater shower most days and still have fresh water to wash my clothes with.  

Well, we said goodbye to Regina last week.  She was finally able to go back to the states to be with her family.  She's been

 away from her husband for over 5 months!  I'm sad that she is gone but I am so happy for them that they will get to be together

 again.  I was really proud actually.  At her little goodbye party, Kanuti, one of the english students, spoke on behalf of the class--in english!--to thank her for her time and work here and everything and he was SO GOOD!  Oh finally! Here's a picture of the class!                                                   

And will I ever learn?  I've needed a haircut for about a month now and I just decided to give it a go and cut it myself....not wise. Luckily, hair grows and I'm in Tanzania.