Life in Bagamoyo

Trip Start May 11, 2008
Trip End Jul 01, 2008

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Flag of Tanzania  ,
Thursday, June 5, 2008

Things have been fairly calm here. Work has been good. I feel like the guys are really learning stuff now. And they seem excited to keep learning more. I have only 1.5 more weeks of teaching. Yesterday (wednesday) the people who I live with that teach at two other locations took all their students to the beach. After I was done teaching I met up with them. There were about 30 orphans between the ages of 3 and 12 who were swimming and playing music. It was really fun. We made peanut butter sandwiches for them and hung out there all day. And for me, who is afraid of children, to have enjoyed that is really saying something.
The weather has been especially hot, and by that I mean around 80 degrees, which I hear is cooler than the forcast at home.
Nothing really exciting has happened to speak of but there are a few culture things I keep forgetting to mention that I find interesting. Several times each day there is a loud noise that sounds like a cow mooing over an intercom. It happens very early in the morning, around noon, and then in the evening. It is the Islamic call to prayer. In Bagamoyo you can hear it only when you are close to a temple, but in Dar es Salaam it sounds throughout the entire city. Sometimes I forget I am in a foriegn country and then I hear that sound and it reminds me things here are still so unfamiliar. 
On Sunday after I returned from safari we went to what is called a "bichi fia" which is pronounced like "beachy fia" which is translated as "beach fire." The locals build a huge bonfire on the beach, bring their drums, guitars, and their dancin' shoes (dancin' shoes = bare feet). They sing songs all together about Tanzania and Bagamoyo and dance and twirl fire and go crazy. It was really fun! It is interesting to see how people here occupy time that we would spend watching tv. It makes for such a close community.
One other story - yesterday when we were at the beach with the kids one of the orphan girls went to another volunteer and was saying "peepee." So elisha walked the girl to the hotel that is close by on the beach to use the toilet. The girl when in and came out but Elisha was sure the girl did not actually use the toilet. She thought maybe that was the first time she had seen a western style toilet. Sot the walked back to the rest of the group, but the girl said "peepee" again. So Elisha thought it would be more famililar to take her into the woods to squat rather than to an actual toilet. She kept pointing out good places to pee but the girl just looked confused. Later at dinner Elisha was telling us about that when another teacher explained to her that "peepee" is candy! The girl was just asking for candy the whole time Elisha was taking her to the toilet and walking her around the woods pointing at random things.
I guess that's all for now. The weekend plans are just to stay in Bagamoyo which I am excited about.
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