HomeMissionTanzania 2011PostsPost, Website, Path, Garden, Hug, Bed, Netball, Chocolate, Walk

Post, Website, Path, Garden, Hug, Bed, Netball, Chocolate, Walk

Very exciting news, we got our first parcels today – drill bits and dental floss for Rob and balloons and pens for the boys. They took 18 days from Australia – not bad. We will keep you POSTED (lol) on the progress of your other parcels.

Rob and I spent the morning at the hospital and nursing school. Rob was making the data I had collected on the Library books filterable and intelligible. I spent some time helping some nursing students on the computer and one of the teachers as well. We also started collecting information for the Diocese of Kagera website. Everyone we talk to is very excited to hear that we are making a website about what goes on in the Diocese and the struggles and needs. The website was started by a group (committee consisting of Diocese and Missionary members) over 12 months ago but is still in it’s infancy. Rob and I will “ignite the flame” and collect information about each of the areas under the Diocese umbrella. Rob has already built the revised framework for the website.

I think there haven’t been many balloons in Murgwanza as we have some very excited little boys playing with a balloon. Such joy.

PathRob arranged for George to continue the path from the back of the house round to the front of the house.  It is looking good. George has been working hard and is tired. We will need to smash some rocks to make more small rocks to fill the path. Rob will pay George some bonus shillings to come and work tomorrow (Saturday).

Rob and I got a hug from Absolom today as we passed on a big hello from Helen & Raymond Howes.
Helen and Raymond are from our Church in Australia and are currently in Iringa working on a solar lighting project. They have been in Murgwanza before and so are known to some here.

We have purchased a bed for the Diocese house we are renting. We needed to replace the hospital bed which was on loan. Wilbrod, our carpenter friend from Tumaini will make us another double bed for guests that come. This will be a fantastic addition to the house. We will pay Wilbrod market value for the bed. We spoke to him this morning about teaching him English. He is very appreciative and will come tomorrow (Saturday afternoon) at 9 o’clock(or 3pm as we know it). There is a difference of 6 hours in the Swahili and English ways of telling the time. The Swahili system consists of two 12 hour parts – sunrise to sunset & sunset to sunrise. English 7am is saa moja – hour 1 in Swahili. That is 1 hour after sunrise. 9am is saa tatu – hour 3 after sunrise. 7pm is saa moja – hour 1 after sunset. 9pm is saa tatu – hour 3 after sunset. Get it??

Tonight is movie night at our place, there will be 9 wazungu here, hope the power stays on!!

It’s Saturday morning now and we have more news. Movie night went without a hitch, it was the first night since we have been here that there was no power out. We had new arrivals here and they brought CHOCOLATE, we had Twix, Snickers and Cadbury crème filled eggs!!! Oh the joy of chocolate.

Also yesterday we heard cheering and clapping in the afternoon up at the oval, so I went to investigate. I found crowds of people and on closer inspection I saw they were cheering a netball game. I was so excited, they were playing netball. I found James who informed me it was a match between Murgwanza Secondary School and another local Secondary School - Shinga. The competition was fierce - there were not too many rules being observed. They played on a grass field with no lines and no bibs, the goal posts were a little crocked and the rings were very bent. The enthusiasm from the players and the crowd made up for the lack of equipment. The scoring was slow, so it was easy to keep up; when I arrived it was one all. With every goal scored the crowd would run onto the court and sing and dance and cheer. After a hard fought match and much disregard for the obstruction rule, Murgwanza won the match 8-3. Go Murgwanza!!! Check out the video footage of a goal. Oh and there was a football match after the netball, which was played just as seriously. Unfortunately Murgwanza lost that one 2-1, but the enthusiasm of the crowd was just as intense. Storming of the pitch and back flips were mandatory at every goal scored, similarly if there was a direct penalty everyone would run on and crowd around to watch. Jake even joined in and ran on and did a few cartwheels when Murgwanza scored their solitary goal.

At times during the football match we did wonder what was the bigger attraction, us or the football game. There was almost as big a crowd watching us as there was watching the game, but as soon as I would pull out the camera, they would hide.

Vege PatchHere are some photos of a small area our large vege garden - George has been busy planting and watering and building a little roof over some seedlings to protect them from birds and the harsh sun. We think we have ground nuts, spinach, cabbage, cucumber and something else that is lost in translation.

This morning we sent George off to the hospital with a huge pustulating growth on his foot. After much debating and discussion of the cost at the hospital he finally returned with medicine and receipts. George was concerned the hospital would cost too much and he wanted to use ‘local medicine’. We encouraged George to see a doctor instead. The walk to GeorgesWe have fed him now and Rob and Jake will walk home with him – a 40 minute walk normally maybe more today as George will be slow. They made it back just before the storm. George lives in a village down the bottom of a huge steep hill. In the photo, you can just make out where George is living – the small silver dots down the bottom. George invited Rob in and they had in-depth chats about Georges life and situation.

Whilst at the football match I spoke to a couple of nursing students about their results from their recent exams. Quite a number of them failed some subjects, they have one more chance to repeat the exam and try to pass or they will have to wait till next year and repeat the entire subject. I have arranged for Alfu (one of Belinda’s boys) to come for some tutoring on Monday and we will do some computer work on Thursday in the library. I fear there may be a large stream of students since Alfu reported only 15 out of the 50 students passed all subjects!!

Rob and the boys joined Godriva and I at the Ngara market today. They had quite a following of young boys and girls all the way around. Goat HeadsRob went to places I have not been before and got some choice photos. He found goats heads for sale. He asked the price. He thinks they are 3000Tsh each That’s about AU$2). Apparently they are a delicacy. Wow. They also found an animal tail for sale. It was a big one. The animal that used to belong to the tail is stewing in the pot near the tail. I’m not sure how much to tail was to buy. TailThe markets are on Saturday’s and are on the side of the hill just down a few hundred metres from the top of the ridge. In the photo, you can see some of the markets with the valley below. This is my 4th week at the markets, Godriva still does all of the buying and negotiating but sometimes I do wonder if she would get a cheaper price if I was not tagging along. It is evident at times that she is charged more as a mzungu price. The main area of the markets is all fruit/veges and some other weird stuff. The outskirts has second hand clothes and food and some other bits and pieces - mostly belts, soap, plastic containers etc. Then there’s the abattoir type of section which is actually the “food court” as well.

Ngara Markets

Rob was just commenting on the state of my feet after only one month is Africa. I spend most days either in sandals or thongs and despite scrubbing my feet each night, they are always dirty. I pity the poor lady who gives me a pedicure on my return to Sydney in 11 months time. I do still have my nail polish from the pedicure I had with mum and Thea just days before I left…….do you think it will last the year!!

Time Difference

For the Lamb who is in the midst of the throne will be their Shepherd, and He will guide them to the springs of the waters of life; and God will wipe away every tear from their eyes.~

Revelation 7:17
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