Thursday, March 29, 2012

With only three more whole days left here in pommern (for two pt us) did not sleep well. My dreams reminded me of how much I miss my family and my day reminded me that our time here has been too short and there is still so much I want to do. For example : Become flivent in Swahili , carry objects on my head or witness childbirth at the clinic. Each day has amazing food, great company, glimpse of rain , work and calm . But at the same time each day is so different from the previous. Today began much like the rest we were treated to penciled , jatmeal , banana and toast. I had my pancakes with peanut butter and my jatmeal with a pollop of jam. After breakfast , things took a different turn. Jessica went to the clinic a usual, and reported back w/o too much new excitement at the clinic , she said today was actually a bit slow. Steven and I switched rolls though , Steven played teacher today! It was a geography excerpt! And he felt that he was well received and that the students loved him. They must have ,because he didn’t return until after lunch. Today was an extra treat for me. I got to play plane boards at the mill with the men. It took much longer than I could have ever imagined but it was interesting to see how then men reacted to having a Mzunga women joining them at the mill and it was especially fun bonding with Moses. Was impressed by how well we were able to communicate w/ body language despite an obvious communication barrier. We did accomplish our goal and delivered beautifully planed lumber to be turned into tippy tap pies for tomorrow! Lunch rocked my world. Then Steven spent the afternoon engulfed in a book while Jessica , Edward and myself went to the primary school to present practice exam materials to the students. They were remarkable . They worked in groups to guess answers , then we presented them. It is so amazing to see yet again how well the students were able to exceed expectations despite, a classroom with no lights, a difficult to read board, and no photocopies of the work, only hand copied notes by the students into their copy books . After finishing at the school Jessica and I took a stroll quickly through the very busy market down in the man area of town around past mama Mzango’s where Steven and Mohammed had already stoppeed for a warm Kilimanjaro and a water respectively . Dinner was the bomb! As usual Dr. Elton joined us to talk about common diseases in Tanzania. Then it was off to bed to shover and begin planning for tomorrow’s lessons! Cheers .

Thursday, March 8, 2012

Goodbye doesn’t mean Forever

This is my final day in Pommern. After breakfast the first stop is the primary school to repair a Tippy Tappy. Next stop is Dr. Elton’s office. Its my lucky day says sir Elton” we have a tooth to remove from a female patient” Doc Elton administers the freezing, I ask some questions, and five minutes later we're ready to go. The first thing I notice , the extraction device looks odd. I was actually expecting pliers for the job. What a weird looking tool. The lady in the chair was really brave, no screaming or crying. The bone ripping noise I hear is like someone trying to split a piece of wood apart. How did Jessica do this for two weeks. She may of looked fragile , but you gotta be tough to look at this.Enough of this , so I’m now off to the secondary school to say goodbye and thanks for welcoming me into the community. After that I give Ajuae a little assistance with geography, socialize with the teachers, and for some , the final goodbye before I fade away into the sunset. Its spaghetti for lunch. After that to the primary school to do a little touch – up and then some free time back at the mission.At about 4:00p.m one of the teachers MUJURI passes by and talks for a while. Soon after that , Ajuae and two friends pass by . Ajuae is looking for Sheena's email address. When they leave, Mujuri, returns and invites me over to his place – mujuri really keeps his home very tidy and cozy looking.He strikes me as very genuine and a sincere person. I wish I would of met him earlier. At 7:00 I show up back at the mission house for dinner. James comes over for another fierce game of scrabble and the night is finished playing Uno with Mohammed. Shower, and hit the hay.

Wednesday, March 7, 2012

“life is mostly simple, don’t complicate it and expect too much."

This morning my alrm goes off as usual at 7:00 a.m I really don’t want to get out of bed immediately, but there is some big chunky bug crawling on the floor in front of my bed.. I get up, put my shoes on and step on the critter. Snap ., crack, pop and that‘ll teach it a lesson . I go to the bathroom to wash up, but no water comes out . The village has a serious crises, no water, so after breakfast , the hunt is on, to find where or where the break may be. We seem to wander aimlesly. Doesn’t anybody mark where the pipe runs underground?Half the village is out looking for the leak. Some of the students are excused from school to assist in the search. This could be tougher than seeking out the legendary hyrax. Finally the brake is found close to the water fall. The pipe is reconnected and all should be well. Nope! Somehow they forget to redirect the water to the secondary school. At 4:00 Harman. Drives down from the secondary school to find out what happened. After a large conference, a valve is turned and the school has water.At 1:00 in the afternoon I teach my final class of geography. Today for every important English term, I also translate the word into Swahili. It really seemed to help the kids. I told the kids “Good show”and they repeat “Good show”. Then the rest of the day I relaxed , finished reading my book, did a little geography.

Tuesday, March 6, 2012

"Don’t always see the glass half empty . Appreciate what’s in there."

This morning I wake up to a another tastey breakfast by mama Tonny. At 9:30 I’m off to school to meet my Tanzanian daughter and teacher Ajuae . Its back to geography teaching . I really get the feeling the kids are understanding more of what I say. After teaching I’m back buying candy, super glue, batteries and a full box of Obama Gum. Then back to the mission house for lunch . After lunch I decide to go looking for Moses , since we were to do some construction work. Rumour was he went to the Catholic mission . On my way there I did a little socializing with the town citizens, eventually bumping into Moses . Moses asks me to follow him . I followed him for fifteen minutes, no idea where were going, no thought of even asking. Finally we stop at Moses’ home, one that he shares with two friends. I always wandered what it may look like inside one of these homes. What I find is really just one step up from homelessness. No chairs no tables, just one dilapidated bed shared by 3 people. After that we lug a very heavy bag of soil back to the mission house, for the vegetable garden. At that point Mohammed and Edward arrive from IRINGA. More supplies were brought to repair the sinks. Finally the sink is fixed.

Monday, March 5, 2012

Things may not of worked out well today , but be patient, you have another chance tomorrow

Last night felt a little eerie, having this whole house to myself. This morning its just Edward and I. Today were going to work around the mission house, installing hardware we bought on Friday. All the main light bulbs are changed to be more energy efficient, to lower the load on the generator.Two new toilet seat covers are successfully installed. Then we have three sinks to repair 1) kitchen faucet2) leaks in the room Sheena and Jessica had occupied 3) Dining room sink.The sink repair did not go very well . Poor Moses broke the new faucet for mama Tonnys kitchen . The dining room sink now leaks twice as fast, and the bedroom sink absolutely doesn’t work. Thankfully there is tomorrow, for a little tweaking. At 3:30 P.M I took off to the secondary school to seek out Ajua Mlelwa, to inquire about more teaching. I fraternize at the school till about 6:30 p.m After dinner pastor saga does a briet visit. I show him my camera pictures and talk a bit. After that, shower and say good night to a fast pace day.

Thursday, March 1, 2012

Well this morning is the beginning of the final day for our lovely young lady Mazunga.This morning were back at it with the tippy tappy hand wash stations. The clinic is a no go today. So I stay with Moses working the hand wash stations until noon. At about 10:00 Sheena and Jessica are off to the secondary school to say their good byes. Sheena is overcome with emotion . At this pint she realizes the profound effect this program has had on her life. At 1:00 in the afternoon I teach geography at the secondary school. Ajuae says I am getting better at teaching after each lesson and that I should change my profession to teaching in Canada.After that Ajuae and Joseph take me to the kitchen where I break one of Edwards cardinal rules. I try the Ugalia and bean stew, I get sick, Edward will tell me” I told you so”Aat the secondary school supply shop I bump into Sheena and Jessica , The girls ask me.If I would like to join them at the primary school to play a educational game with the children. I get to keep score, and use my yellow, blue and pink chalk. Then its back to the mission house where the girls now spend what seems like an eternity making tests . Today I find out the local girls here in town are deficient in iron , and the side effects are causing them to eat the martar around the bricks. For dinner Mama Tonny treats us with donuts.After dinner Edward treats us to a little history of Tanzania, then Sheena kindly down loads my camera pictures, just in case I lose my camera.