Well…the pace certainly picked up! We’ve been busy busy busy! Mr. Kihoo requested that I continue working with him, so I’ve essentially picked up right where I left off before safari! It’s still crazy with this many people here – but I honestly spend so little time at the mission house that I barely notice! I wake up around 6 am every morning, make myself a cup of tea and sit on the porch, eat a quick breakfast, before I rush off to school for a class that starts at 7:30 am. I teach at least one class every day, but Thursdays are especially busy; two 80-minute classes where we assigned exercises, meaning that our break time was spent marking around 90 exercise books. Phew! I didn’t know that teaching could make you so tired! (Definitely gives me an appreciation for my teachers and all the hard work they do!)
A group of the volunteers are going to the Hilltop Lodge for safari this weekend, so the house will be a little quieter, but the commotion is starting to become the norm. I’m teaching Mr. Kihoo’s class tomorrow – but he won’t even be there! He has to go to a wedding in Iringa town and asked if I’d cover his class. I guess that means that he really trusts me to do an okay job…but I’m feeling the pressure! This afternoon, I met up with the Form V students that I’ve been tutoring, and we worked on English sentence structure and verb tenses.
We’ve had some crazy UNO games, some delicious food, and quite a bit of laughter with the new volunteers. I’m really looking forward to the weekend and the next two weeks with these wonderful people. I was a little concerned (coming into this) that the large volunteer team wouldn’t click, but we really haven’t had any issues. I think that we all share this passion for travel and volunteering that brings us together…and it definitely takes a specific kind of person to jet off to Tanzania to volunteer for three weeks!
The dentist/doctor from the clinic, Dr. Godfreid, joined us for dinner tonight – it was fascinating to hear him talk about the difficulties of the clinic. He’s a very intelligent man and we’re very lucky to get to work with him. I was enthralled with everything that he said, but there were a few things that stuck out in my mind that I think y’all might find interesting as well. Dr. Godfreid was explaining how he is a government employee (meaning that the Tanzanian government assigns him to a medical facility and pays his salary) but that the government does not provide any supplies or medication to these clinics, meaning that they have very little available resources to treat patients. Part of their problem when it comes to lack of resources is that the clinic spends most of its available money on petrol (for the generator to provide electricity) rather than medication or medical supplies. They need the electricity from the generator in order to sterilize supplies, use the single dental chair they possess, etc. He talked about how maintaining cleanliness is difficult because there isn’t always a reliable source of clean water…they can’t always clean blankets for the patients and sometimes even have issues with hand washing! I was sad to hear that there are few girls who pursue university degrees in science or math…he explained to us that the girls “disappear” due to the exams being extremely difficult, and the lack of resources for support in the math and science subjects. I felt like a sponge, just absorbing all this information from him (and I’ll continue to soak in all I see and do at the clinic as well!)
OH – I almost forgot! Aidan was THRILLED that Edward brought a rooster to the mission house for him to chase. We were quite happy when he caught it, because that meant that we got to have a delicious chicken dinner! It was SO fun to watch, and definitely an experience unique to Pommern…I don’t see a lot of chicken chases going on in Clifton!
Aidan and his chicken (for dinner!) 😛
Me and Mr. Kihoo 🙂