In case anyone is wondering, Stoney Tangawizi is the single greatest ginger ale on Earth.
It should be made available in Canada immediately.
This past Saturday we got a bit of a treat when we were invited to the monthly Play Day that Faraja runs for children living with HIV in their Home Based Care program. For anyone interested in donating, Faraja doesn’t have any funding to run one in March, and their next one is tentatively planned for April. If you want to facilitate a Play Day for March, let me know and I’m sure I can arrange something. It probably costs a little more than you would expect, since it involves food for between 50 and 100 people, travel stipends for the children, and they’re all supplied with things like soap, cooking oil, etc to lessen the burden on their guardians (often grandparents or other family members).
I say it was a treat because:
A) we’re working above the project level, so we aren’t often involved with the beneficiaries (aside from focus groups)
B) it was fun
We brought a few sticker books, which were big hits with the younger kids. I think we had a Spiderman/Superman combo book (no doubt signed off on by both Marvel and DC), Winnie the Pooh, and Strawberry Shortcake. Not a Mzungu there survived un-stickered. Here’s a picture of me with Pooh on my face:
Here we have a picture of Lonny, with his camera buried somewhere beneath all those children:
We’ve become pretty good friends with some German Faraja volunteers, and they were there as well. Here’s Jan and Makoti doing their best to translate a German book about cartoon bears practising oral hygiene into Kiswahili. The kids wanted me to read it at first, not understanding that A) German and English are different languages, and B) I speak even less Kiswahili than German. Also, there is no word for “bear”.
Here’s Mareen (the other German volunteer) with some bubbles, which may have been an even bigger hit than the stickers:
At the end of the Play Day we ended up sitting in the shade throwing pop-flies for a group of kids to chase with a hackey sack. Here’s a group eagerly awaiting our next toss:
If something jumps out at you in that pictures, it’s because albinoism seems a lot more prevalent here than back in Canada (or maybe just more obvious?). At any rate, I’ve seen a lot more albinos here than I expected.
Sunday was a pretty lazy day for me. Lonny decided to join Irishad in going to Church, but I just didn’t have it in me that morning. I was also suspicious of his claims that the service was less than an hour. Sure enough, Lonny got home around 4 hours later. Apparently I missed some good speaking in tongues though. The power was off most of Sunday, which is an all-too common occurrence in Morogoro. It came back on at night though. For dinner we had Pilau (amazing rice with spices and stuff in it), kuku (chicken), and some mixed tomatoes and onions. For dessert we had ndizi (banana) and some awesome home-made juice. It was pineapple-avocado with a hint of vanilla tonight. A previous meal had mago-banana-avocado. We spent the rest of the night listening to tunes and chatting with Shabogi (Mama Adul’s son) about Bob Marley, Idi Amin, and his goal of joining the Free Masons. I also exploded some brains with the only card trick I know.
Earlier today we met with the head of Faraja’s Traditional Medicine department, and then held a focus group meeting with some of the older kids at the Street Side School in town. We’re now in an internet cafe, and I’m once again planning my revenge on Vodacom and their useless wireless modem services. We were in the shop for the SEVENTH time this afternoon, where were learned that their modems just eat bandwidth for fun when you’re not even browsing, so we’ll have to disconnect between web pages just to be safe. So that’s why our thing ran out of money way before it should have. So I figure any picture uploading will probably happen at internet cafes.
In an hour or so we’re going to meet a man about a Safari. There is a beer here called Safari. But I’m talking about the looking at animals from a Jeep kind.