Wednesday, September 30, 2009
Saturday, September 26, 2009
Wednesday, September 23, 2009
Wednesday, September 16, 2009
Friday, September 11, 2009
A few weeks ago we went to Kigali, Rwanda for week-long conference on church planting movements. There were over 100 people there from 17 countries and they sections in both English and French. The teacher was David Watson, who has done mission work all over the world.
Monday, September 7, 2009
Saturday, September 5, 2009
We have finally made it to Geita, the town we’ve been planning on living in for the last four years, after five-and-a-half months of being in Tanzania. This is quite exciting for us. It’s been really good to have gotten into things slowly here, spending time with the Mwanza team, language school, and the conference in Rwanda (more on that in another post)-- I think in the long run, adjusting slowly is a much better course of action than jumping right into working not knowing any language, culture, etc.
So, Brett and I moved here on Wednesday and are currently sharing a house with Carson and Holly, which the Groen’s have rented but won’t move into for a while because they’re in Mwanza doing paperwork and going through red tape for the orphanage. The house is a nice little place, only about a 100 yard walk to the center market, which is helpful. On the other hand, it’s also 100 yards to the market, which also means 100 yards from the discos, the church which is having a revival ( I don’t think you can comprehend the meaning of loud until you have attended a Tanzanian church revival), and the Mosque which reads 1/30 of the Koran every night on a loudspeaker for Ramadan. Currently, none of us in the house are speaking, because you can’t hear each other unless you yell. This lasts from about 8:30am to midnight. Of course, once the revival’s over, it won’t be an everyday thing.
This is our current house. You can't see it, but there's a big beautiful mango tree right in front of it.
But we have been looking for houses. We’re trying to find a house within a mile of the town center, so we can be accessible to the people here, yet be far enough away to not hear the music all the time. Also high on our list is a house with an indoor kitchen. This is a harder task than you might think. Tanzanians typically cook outside, so most houses don’t have kitchens. And often the ones that do are very small, just enough room for a sink and refrigerator. Finding houses to rent is in itself a highly amusing process. There aren’t any real estate agents or for rent signs here, so basically you just drive around town until you see a house you think you might like, then stop the car, get out, and ask if anyone is home. If there is someone home, you ask if they live there, and if the house is for rent. If it is, you then find out who the owner is and somehow manage to get in contact with him (often they live in another town) to see the house. If the house is not for rent, you ask if they know of any houses around that are. Tanzanians hate telling someone “no,” because they don’t won’t to disappoint anyone, so often let you see the house even if it being rented, and then after an hour, hint that maybe you should look at another house, because it might be more suitable. We really liked one house until we found that it was already being rented. Some days of house-hunting have been more successful than others. But never boring.
The people of Geita have been extremely welcoming and friendly. They love that we speak Swahili, even if we don’t speak it perfectly. They’re happy to just sit and talk for 30 minutes or an hour about whatever, and we’ve been able to have some good conversations already about the needs of the community, etc.
The first 4 days here have been great, hopefully with more greatness to follow.