Oh the Heat is On....
So, the electricity is out in the entire town but for some reason it is on in the post office. I'm here using the internet and though I have technically 45 minutes left, the post office closes in 10 minutes. So...we'll see how it goes. I apologize for not writing last weekend. I was at site and my friend Erica came over to play. She cut my hair! Only made it a little shorter. It was getting long and its wickedly hot these days.
So whats new? Not much. Just general hanging out in the village. Went to church and a funeral on two separate occasions recently, both for the first time! Church I'd been to before in TZ but never in my village. I went with my favorite Mama and it was interesting with a lot of singing and praying and I was even able to follow along pretty well! I heard the word mtakatifu a lot, which means saint, which I guess makes a great deal of sense in Church (even me not being Christian knows THAT much....!) And the next day, the Father went to see my Mama to express his happiness at seeing me in Church! Good times. The funeral was less interesting. It was a Muslim funeral of a family member of a well known business owner in my village. I went with my Mama and covered myself entirely in two pieces of traditional cloth (like a sarong, called a kanga here). We went to sit in the "women's section" near the house and there were SO many people that it was hard to find a shaded area not occupied. We were unfortunately not able to see much but I saw the coffin being taken for burial followed by all the men (women were not allowed. I was told this was a Muslim custom. Can anyone enlighten me further on this?). I more or less sat in part shade, part sun, not doing much but chatting on and off with my Mama for about two hours. Then we got hungry and tired and left. I think I was pretty dehydrated cuz it was nearing the noon hour and all I'd had that day was chai (tea...like in America! But not chai tea as we know it) but I felt all weird and dizzy and started seeing fuzzy. But was okay after lots of water and some sitting.
I'm pretty excited and starting to think/plan out my plans for travelling in December. There is of course, Christmas and New Years, but also, all the schools are closed for a month and a half starting early December. Crazy! So a couple of options: my friend Ness travelling down here to see me, me going rafting on the Nile in Uganda and possibly checking out Nairobi with friends Danielle and Myra, me going up to Lake Victoria in northern TZ (way way up there) to see my friend Brian. Then our group is planning a huge gathering of sorts on the lovely island of Zanzibar for New Year's. And soon after New Years will be my Mid Service Conference (where I get to find out what fun worms I may have contracted in the past year!!) at the Peace Corps Office in Dar es Salaam. So basically, a bunch of options, lots of decisions to be made, limited time and cash, etc etc. But oh so exciting! Sometimes I think about home and how awesome it is and how much I miss it, but then other times I'm like: check out this AMAZING opportunity that I have being here to learn, travel, grow, see the world, and explore. So its a great love hate relationship that I have. I guess you could expect nothing less here.
So more on the hate part.... Yesterday I was really THIS close to throwing a rock at a little kid. I was with my friend Erica and put the rock down but really, I swear I probably could have done it if I were alone. A little kid! He was like 3 or 4! But he was being an absolute brat of a child and I just won't go into details... But the thought is frightening huh? Basically, my point is that here in TZ I have endless frustration and unjustifiable anger. That sort of just builds up and sometimes I am good about keeping it under wraps but at other times, it just rears its ugly head and I want to....throw rocks at children... About this unjustiable anger though, maybe as a crazy American, I have just become used to my ways of getting what I want and when I want it. And there can be consequences and rectifications (is that even correct English?) when that doesn't happen. Which actually, right now, as I am typing that, sounds a bit ridiculous. But for example, bus driver stops to have breakfast for an hour, I'm waiting at the post office forever and people are just cutting in line, people openly mocking and talking about me when I'm standing right there!, constantly being ripped off or having to question prices for everything from a provided service to buying food, etc etc. I can go on, but I won't. In either case, a lot of that stuff, if it occurred in America, would be grounds for complaints and sometimes more (lawsuits, anyone? Or maybe thats a bit of an exaggration). But here in TZ, you can't get angry or mad. Its not justified. The only thing you can do is laugh it off, be patient, stay calm, and related peaceful forms of "dealing". You CAN'T get mad. It just happens. Its going to happen and nothing you do can stop it. It's just how it is and you've just gotta deal with it. I've got to admit that I've gotten TONS better at all of that since arriving here, but some days it just gets harder. And I'm not the only one. I think I'll end here, sorry for the not so coherent-ness. Am racing against time a bit. Hope everyone is well! HAPPY HALLOWEEN!!!! Eat lots of candy and pumpkin pie for me :)