Thursday, August 30, 2012

I’m back!  A quick beginning update — I now seem to have regular access to internet!!  I will try and blog at least once a day to tell of my travels, but for now, I want to tell you about Tanzania.

Where I am at is honestly, not unfamiliar.  I know you think I’m crazy, BUT, I walked/climbed/crawled about 3/4ths of the way up the Uluguru Mountains in our area.  It was pretty and hopefully my pic’s will be up soon to show you!  But honestly, when I was in Colorado on the mountains, it was just as pretty.  I think we convince ourselves, or the tourist business or whomever, that everything is so, so wonderful somewhere else that we forget we have right there with us. So, it was fun, but I didn’t do the top.  I don’t know that it was worth it after what Rebekah (volunteer) said (just the top!).  But it made for a fun day, something to do.  But it gave me some perspective on “the world” in Tanzania.

It was very disheartening when our guides, David & his friend, who were ‘told’ to go with us, stuck us with the tab.  Mine was quite small, Tsh300, or about 20 cents for the daladala.  Now, in Rebekah’s case, well, she had to go to the top of the mountain!  Rebekah is 25 and the boys are younger.  She started down the mountain ready to go!  They were moving along when here comes the taxi that took us to the mountain!  The boys were tired so they called him to come back and get them.  That cost her Tsh6000, $4.00.  She had no idea they had called.  We are told to be very cognizant of the culture so we both just kept our mouths shut, but REALLY??  And when I got hit I heard “Mercani, money” hahahaha.  I take offense.

The ground here is hard.  We are in the winter season, just after the rainy season, but they didn’t get heavy rains.  I guess the weather everywhere is in a major shift!  But where the dirt is being dug, more out by where I am staiyng, Mukumbu, the dirt is deep reddish-orange.  Again, I thought of the soil in Colorado, but I can’t remember where exactly we were at.  But it is definitely the same!  So maybe the grass isn’t greener on the other side??

I will tell you a little about Rebekah and then try to upload some pics.  She is from Denmark and is obviously young!  She has dual citizenship with the US, born there, so she is an expert on US doings.  I learned very quickly that everything I would say, or at least try to about America, I was told why I was wrong and ‘no, its not like that’.  I gave up very quickly on stating anything, but there were a couple of times I very ‘firmly’ defined my point.  Although she could be irritating like this, it was nice to have someone to hangout with for those 6 days.  She has a heart as big as the world, but lack experience, and unfortunately, I think that has seriously bitten her in the butt!

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