HomeMissionTanzania 2011PostsMake a cuppa and settle in!!

Make a cuppa and settle in!!

Make a cuppa and settle in, I think this blog post will be a big one!!!

We have been busy busy…. On Friday we collected John and Anneke from Rusomo for a 5 day visit with us. Rob and I forgot about the 1 hour time difference in Rwanda so we had a lengthy wait at the border. Not to worry - we are well known there now and had some interesting chats with both the Rwandan and Tanznaina border control. As a result, when John and Anneke did arrive they were greeted warming and teased that they were late as we had been waiting a long time!! On the way we took the new punt across the river. It used to be a foot powered punt but has recently been replaced with a diesel one and much larger. The plans are to flood the valley it is in to make a hydro-electric water energy thing, so I guess they are preparing for when the river will be much wider.

Mafiga Matatu

John and Anneke are a couple from Australia and New Zealand who are currently living in The Netherlands (John is an old St Phils boy). They came laden with food treats in the form of Dutch chocolates and spreads for our bread. Stay in the dug out canoe or else...Also a jar of Promite that they had exchanged with some English friends and best of all....coffee from Kenya and Ethiopia. They are half way through their African adventure and it was lovely of them to stop by for a visit. We have shown them the sights of Ngara (which doesn't take long). They have feasted on chips mayai and goat kebabs and yesterday we took them to Mafiga Matatu. This is the border hills of Rwanda, Burrundi and Tanzania. We have been before and it was interesting to see the contrasts in the landscape as last time we went it was very dry and now with the rains all is green and fresh and the surrounding shambas newly planted. The boys at the boat tried to over charge us hugely at the river but I haggled and refused to pay more than we had in the past….once we told Mitchell to get out of the boat and walk away they agreed. It was still a hugely inflated price but this is Africa.

On Saturday the whole family plus John and Anneke came to market with us. The locals are used to us and don’t pay us much attention but John and Anneke were new faces and pulled quite a crowd. In the afternoon Rob and I went to a wedding that we had received the invitation for on Thursday. Lucky John and Anneke were here to supervise the kids!! So the wedding invite said the church service started at 1pm and the party at 3pm. Empty ChurchFrom experience we knew things always start late so we asked around and the general consensus was come at 1:30-1:45pm. Rob (as he hates being late) set off at 1:15pm……not a soul at the church as you can see from the photo Rob took, so we came home and did a couple of jobs and returned at 1:45pm - still no one. By 2pm we were chatting to one of the Pastors who was getting quite irate that Africa is ALWAYS late. The bride and groom had just arrived so he took it upon himself to start. So we all (about 5-10 guests) entered the church to began at 2:15pm. More guests dribbled in and Pastor Aaron wrapped up the service in 1 hour. Then we joined the procession of cars through town to the reception. This involved about a 1½ hour drive at about 5km/h with continual horn beeping all through Murgwanza and then Ngara to a photo stop then on to the reception place. It caused quite a stir that there were wazungu in the wedding procession. We arrived at the reception place about 5:15pm. Remember the party was supposed to start at 3pm. There were a few more guests that had come straight to the party and had not been to the church or in the procession. Finally at about 6ish proceedings began. There were speeches and processions and cake eating and cheers and present giving and NO FOOD. Rob and I had little understanding of what was happening and we were increasingly tired and hungry and had headaches from the very loud music. It was amusing to watch the dancing and singing and the ceremonies. Finally at 8pm we left, still no food but we didn't care. We felt for poor John and Anneke who had been left with the boys all afternoon.

Bride & Groom

On our return home all was well and the boys had taken our guests out and about and introduced them to all our friends around Murgwanza. They were very impressed with how everyone knew and greeted the boys and how mature the boys were especially Mitchell. It’s been so nice to have guests and has given them a real insight into life here and the number of Tanzanian visitors we get every day. Anneke has a science background and has been helping Ephraim with his biology studies (the non-human bits). Also, she has answered many of the boys questions like Oliver’s ‘how are waves made?’ Tomorrow they head back to Rwanda to see some gorillas then back to Kenya to climb Mt Kenya, we have taken them walking here to give them some ‘altitude training’.

This afternoon I am teaching again at the nursing school (unless I arrive and discover the timetable has changed!!!) Tomorrow I think I will do revision and maybe a short test. We have one more week of night time computer sessions and then Bujumbura on Friday. The boys are all counting the sleeps (as are Rob and I).

Chocolate Hail

We did home church on Sunday with John and Anneke and were joined by George, James and Johnathon. George started church with a question “What is the difference between Jesus and God?” We explained plus directed him to some passages in the bible and encouraged him to read for himself as well. On Sunday afternoon, Vithalis (amongst others) dropped by and we asked him for the English version of his sermon he had preached in the morning. Ephraim and Lameck were here and listened with great interest. Ephraim has asked Rob to come and teach the school Bible Study group on Thursdays as the teacher they had was a Form 6 students who has returned to school.

Jake and Oliver started building ANOTHER cubby in the bushes between our place and Bishops shamba. Today Kwizera and Imami were roped in to ‘help’ (otherwise known as build). It is a spectacular construction named Mt Colah Village. I hope you can see in some of the pictures I took this morning.

The New Cubby

The New Cubby

We seem to have adopted a couple of local girls who come and do drawing on our veranda some days. Unfortunately they have sticky fingers and often leave clutching pens and pencils in their skirts only to be found out when they drop one. I guess they see we have so many and they have none they don’t see the harm, but if we started giving them all out more will come and we would have none left for visitors to use. We are already talking about all the stuff we will give away when we go and the boys also have been mentally allocating toys, books and clothes they will give away.

Gotta go now...must go and teach.


Time Difference

Come. And let him who thirsts come. Whoever desires, let him take the water of life freely.~

Revelation 22:17
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