Successes and Obstacles

We’ve had a few ups and downs since we returned to Tabora.

We continue to battle with illness. On Monday we were all feeling pretty ill, especially Ros, and today I got more sick than I have been since I arrived in Tanzania. The days we don’t feel well have become a little bit of an obstacle as there isn’t much we can do but sit inside the house, drink plenty of fluids, and wait to feel better.

However, when we are able, we are certainly out and about. This past Sunday, I made another trip to the Lutheran church and was able to have a long talk with the pastor, who happens to be the brother of our landlady. We have an invitation to his shambaa this coming Saturday.

Today Ros and Rachael got the chance to go to visit another shambaa owned by a friend of Mustafa, someone we are close to in the village. They found their trip interesting and, despite their protests, were given overly generous gifts from the field.

We visited houses the other day, trying to get to know the section of the village that once belonged to the sisal estate. While there we saw people slicing and drying sisal leaves in the sun, and were pleasantly surprised to find an old man weaving a reed mat. We all want to learn the process for making those.

We’ve had so many other small interactions in the last few days it is hard to talk about them all. We’ve played draughts (checkers) with young men, sat on corners with old wazee, taken walks with our neighbors, and followed children to the flour mill in town. We have learned few specifics, but a general picture of life here is beginning to fall into place.

Sorry, no picture for this post. Next time.

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About Joshua Paul

Due to his father's military background, Joshua spent his childhood moving throughout the continental United States. Though he did not travel out of the country until his teens, Joshua has been interested in cultural anthropology and linguistics as long as he can remember. A recent graduate from St. John's College in Annapolis with a B. A. in Liberal Arts, he has studied ancient Greek and French for literary purposes. He currently lives near Boise, Idaho.
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