Tuesday, September 29, 2009


(Mama Ruth and Grace in a dress from Colorado)
I can't believe another week has gone by since we arrived.  So much has happened to us and St. John's University has not even started back up yet!!  There are so many topics I could write about that I have decided to share only one or two for each new blog I write.  That way I can upload pictures and you can see the joys and frustrations of living in Dodoma.
The first topic I would like to share is about the missionaries here and volunteers like ourselves.  There is only a small community of internationals here, mostly from Australia, New Zealand, United Kingdom and few of us from the United States and Canada.  We mostly bump into one another as we move about downtown shopping at all the English friendly stores or markets.  Everyone here is connected somehow to a church organization, health agency, soil or water project, educational institution, book and Bible distributors, or like us here on our own.  Here in Dodoma there are about 100 of us out of about 300,000 population.  We sort of stand out, especially when walking.  Tanzania appears to use a lot of outside assistance to help with humanitarian projects. David and I have met a number of people who are from the UK, Australia or New Zealand.  In fact I am beginning to think in an accent!! OOPS!
                                                                                                                   Church of England in Dodoma

Another group of people who live and work here are the ones whose ancestors came from India.  They appear to run the smaller grocery stores and some of the resturants.  They speak several languages including  English. As of yet no motels, just a couple of hotels are operated by people orginally from India.
Market owners are locals along with the day laborers.  We see road work (Shoveling gravel, etc.) often done by African women.
(Woman do a lot of the work here!)
We will need to employ a housekeeper three days a week.  They are usually women or men who live near the college and will clean, wash by hand (no washing machines or dryers here) and iron, cook lunch, burn your trash, ( no pick up in Tanzania) and water what brave little plants you have growning! I draw the line at burning my own trash you see.  By the way if we had to do that in America I can tell you that it will really change the way you see yourself shopping.  Last week David bought 5 cans of coke and I asked our host  where to put the empty cans.  He said they will go out in a hole in the backyard for things you don't burn. I turned to David and said, "Sorry, only bottles for you from now on..I can't have a dump and a fire pit in my backyard!" So it's back to the 1950's with glass bottles and cases of drinks.
Sunday morning downtown Dodoma!

The last item is our University population.  The faculty here are all educated (MA, or few with PhDs like David) and come from various African countries, Tanzania as well as the usual western nations.  The staff of administrators are all from Africa and many from Tanzania.  Some have been educated out of the country even as far away as the US or UK.  That is a blessing for our students.  It provides a wonderful role model.  More coming about the food, the clothing, the roads, the weather and yes our mission!
             R TO L David,  teachers from St. John's and  CAMS on a Sunday for coffee and biscuts.

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