Thursday, May 31, 2012

It's the Little Things

My life has become so much better now that I can buy these on a regular basis:

And these.  Especially these. 

Imported from Spain.  I love you, Spain. 

And since we have always had these in abundant supply, well, you can see what I am eating for lunch these days. 

Friday, May 25, 2012

Our Team

Tanzania has an amazing soccer stadium that was a gift from China. (Or rather, I should say "gift," since I'm sure there were a great deal of strings attached.)

Gil has taken students to games many times before, but this was my first time.  Tanzania vs. South Africa, Women's teams.  South Africa won, 5-2. 

Afterwards, Gil was surprised I knew the score, because really, for me the afternoon was about the time I got to spend with these two ladies.  Lauren (on the right) and I have worked together at HOPAC for three years.  Alyssa and I, Lord willing, will be working together in the next season of our ministry. Both are with our mission and are here long term.  Both are kindred spirits.  Whenever we are together, we talk about what God is teaching us and the problems teenagers face and African politics and poverty.  Both have experienced one of the hardest years of their lives, and both are living testimonies of the goodness and sovereignty of God.  Truly, their friendships are one of the biggest blessings in my life. 

Wednesday, May 23, 2012

Tired Out

If I were a tire, and I found out that I was being shipped to Dar es Salaam, I would run away screaming.  I mean, look at this.  What on earth does this to a tire?  

But we in particular seem to have a particularly bad time with our tires.  So bad, in fact, that there was a week last year when we had three flat tires, on three different tires, in one week.  So after that I started keeping a log of our flat tires, and here you go:

16 August:  back left, new tube
30 August:  front left, new tube
2 August:  spare patched
13 September:  replace front left
13 Setember:  back right losing air
5 October:  replace back left
10 October:  back right patched
4 April:  back right, new tube
9 April:  front right patched
20 April:  front right, new tube
12 May:  front right patched
21 May:  replace front right (after the road ate it up, see picture above!)

The guys at the tire place recognize us immediately now.  We've had to replace some of the bolts on our tires because they've gotten so stripped that they wouldn't come off anymore. 

And there's no Triple A here.  But still?  I have never changed a tire in this country.  I pull over, and instantly 2 or 3 strong young men run over to help me.  Once I even got a flat on a (short) ferry ride, and the guys had it changed lickety split, in five minutes flat.  I drove off the ferry and was on my way.

The roads?  Ehhhh....  But the people?  YES!

Thursday, May 10, 2012

Friday Night Lights

When Gil and I volunteered to be Student Council advisors last year, I didn't realize that actually my job description would be Event Coordinator. 

But since Student Council plans most of the social events of the school year, and the buck stops with me, well.....I become Event Coordinator.  With the help my very creative husband and a group of motivated students who take on lots of responsibility, of course.  It's a blast, but it sure stresses me out! 

Last Friday night was our crowning achievement of the year:  The All-School Talent Show.  And oh yes....we had it all:  the lights, the fog machine, the beautiful hostesses arriving to the stage on motorcycles covered with glow sticks. 

I was incredibly proud of my team, and the 15 groups of students who sang, danced, and acted their hearts out.  And even though there was some Justin Bieber thrown in there, I would say that it was a sensational evening.  

Some of the judges 

Randra and Samael, my beautiful vice-president and president and our hosts!

Our winners!

Friday, May 4, 2012

The True Definition of Drive-Through (Drive-By?) Shopping

Stuck in traffic? 
Thirsty?  Needing a cell phone cover, a steering wheel cover or some dish cloths?  Some roasted cashew nuts or perhaps some fried termites? 

Well, here in Tanzania we have customer service that allows you to shop from the comfort of your own car! 

(Unfortunately, I didn't get a picture of the guy selling large pruning shears.  I was afraid of what he would do to me if he saw me taking his picture.)