After the Safari we headed straight to Zanzibar to have some sun, salty winds and some relax before going back to Sweden and the winter… We started out in the main city – Stone Town. It is such a nice little town just by the sea! A labyrinth of small streets between high buildings with the most beautiful doors! We celebrated the new year in Stone Town and then headed to the beaches on the east side – Paje and Jambiani 🙂 Beautiful! Oskar spent his last days with us before heading back to Sweden.
After some last editing we have now sent the essay in!
Hi everyone! Sorry for the late update AGAIN…we are not good at doing this blog-thing cause there is happening things all the time here in Tanzania, and you get pretty frustrated with the internet from time to time…
Anyway! We’ve been at a Safari in Mikumi. It was wonderful! Two whole days with driving around in the national park with lions, zebras, hippos, elephants and so on and so on <3 We’ve been enjoying ourselves like crazy!
We have sent our essay to some friends that will read it and tell us what more we can do so we can feel that we did our very best before handing it in 🙂 Wish us good luck!
I started to write this text while sitting on the most delayed bus ride any of us has had.. But when I was finished and ready to post, the website refused to work. Since then I have been busy celebrating Christmas on safari!!! But more of that next time 😉 And here is the updated version of the text:
So I will start with the bus ride between Dar es Salaam and Morogoro: We went to the bus station at 10 on sunday morning, and there we found out that there was no tickets left until 2 pm. So then we just had to wait. After a while we got to know that there had been an accident, and all busses where delayed. So, instead we left Dar around 4:30 pm, but that was not the end of it. There was so much traffic jam that we only drove a few kilometers the first hours. The journey was supposed to take around 4 hours, instead it took about 6 hours.. And then there was maybe one and a half hour drive to get from Morogoro to Mikumi.. So we went to bed around half past 2, that was ours “uppesittarkväll”! Haha 🙂
We arrived in Dar es Salaam on thursday after a week in Tanga. We really loved Tanga, it is such a nice city, with such nice, friendly people! We have been shopping at the local market, hanging with our new friends, visited the beach, gotten ourselves a haircut, eating local food – our favourite is Maharagwe (Beans) and the fantastic chapati 🙂 It’s been so good to just stroll the streets, or take a ride on a Boda-boda (motorbike), greeting everyone with the little Swahili we know and finally just live and explore Tanzania <3
And also: The last day in Tanga we finished our essay! It feels so fantastic 🙂 Hongera! (Congratulations!) to us!! 😀 It is really cool to look back at the work we done, all the way from emailing the whole world in search for a contact person and at last finding TICC! To starting to plan the essay and do the application to SIDA – and getting it! Then, to actually arrive in Tanzania, starting the interviews, gathering the data and until now, when all the data has been analysed and actually has something interesting to say! Wow 🙂
We then went to Dar es Salaam for two days. Compared to Tanga this is just such a crazy, chaotic city! Wow! We went to the market here, and it was such a chaotic and still awesome experience. There are shops, and then there are stalls outside on the streets, and then there are people walking around selling stuff, and then there is motorbikes, cars, tuk-tuks and then there is also all the people there shopping! You can barely move around, so it’s not that easy to do any shopping.. but it was really fun to go there! We also welcomed Oskar (Nike’s boyfriend) to Tanzania! He will travel with us for two weeks 🙂
This week has gone by so fast! Actually every week does, but we still need to say it to make you realise how fast it goes!
The week started with us leaving for a three hours car ride to get to a Massaj-village. We had a private driver who was the best! He drove us at a rode…we wouldn’t say it was a rode, rather a path…but he took us 🙂 Several times we thought it wouldn’t work, but he just kept on going! So we arrived at the massaj-village and we slept there and cooked some food there. We also to a walk around the village and got to meet the leader of the village. He served us half a litre of hot milk – Jesus! That was good but we were so full after drinking it.
After visiting the massaj-village we traveled to a town called Lushoto. There we got the best guide who we travelled with for two days. Wow wow wow! Lushoto was so nice! We went up in Usambara mountains and that was the most amazing thing we’ve seen and done so far in Tanzania. It was so green, and beautiful, and cool, and something that you never could stop getting amazed of. We can just say WOW.
With sore legs and a smile on our face we went back to Tanga to stay for a week and continued to write our essay. The essay goes very good and our teacher is helping us out with all the details 🙂
During Sunday we went to Amboni caves here in Tanga and it was a really cool experience! When in Tanga visit the caves if you have time 🙂
We have been busy righting our essay, so we felt that we did not have that much to wright about! We have finished our interviews and since then our life has been mainly about sleep, some training in the morning, food, writhing, food, sun, writing, food, sleep… repeat! But we are making very good progress! Actually, as I am now placed in my bed writing this post, Mirijam is finishing the last things on the essay! Tonight we will send in the first draft including all parts! Ofcourse, this is just the first draft, so we are sure there will be a lot more work to do.. But still! Hongera (Congratulation) to us!! 🙂
But actually we did something totally amazing today! We got the chance to visit a family living in a village just outside of Tanga City. It is a rather interesting family, as it consists of three wives and one husband. Together they have twelve kids!
It is allowed as part of the Islamic belief, that a man can have up to four wives. For us this is rather strange, even provoking, mainly since it is not allowed for a woman to do the same thing. Still, this is not Sweden, it is a totally different context, and thus, you can not judge the individuals in the same way as you might had in Sweden. It is not the person, it is the structures of the society. Rather it is important to be open and to discuss our thoughts and views.
As for this family it was the most amazing one! We met two of the wives, the husband, and almost all of the children. We spent the day playing with the kids and helping out with some cooking. We enjoyed a fantastic meal and took a walk though the village to visit the father of the husband. They were so friendly, honest and generous! We wished we could have stayed longer! Also because this is to experience the real Tanzania! In TICC we have had a very good stay, and it has been perfect when writing our essay, still it is far from the real Tanzania..
We are really longing to get out there and experience the country more 🙂
And: That is soon! On Monday we will leave TICC and head of to new adventures.. More about that next time 🙂
The past week we’ve continued visiting dispensaries, observing nursing staff and also begun with our interviews 🙂 we’re doing good!! We have the best interpreter and we’re learning something new every day!
Our days usually starts around 6am. We rise and we train, it’s yoga, running or tabata each morning and then we enjoy a long chai ya asubuhi (breakfast). After breakfast we head out for the dispensaries in the rural areas. When we get there the nursing staff and the patients are welcoming us and speaks open about their work and their issues. We’ve met around 10 nursing staff and everyone sees their work as a mission in life. Their happy being at work all day, evening and night cause they love helping people. Even though they say it’s hard, they still finish every ”complaint” with a smile and says ”this is what I want to do”. The patients are often kids and they are often very sick. Some of the patiens don’t have clean water and there’s a lot of tests for Malaria since it’s very common in rural areas. It’s an experience seeing these people being calm and dealing with Malaria or other diseases as if they had a regular cold.
Things are often different from Sweden who’s a developed country, and even though it’s a non developed country, we have much to learn from Tanzania. The way they help each other, cheer for one and other, and speaks to each other is so humble, friendly and encouraging. It’s truly a joy to see all this happiness in one of the worlds poorest countries 🙂
This week we’ve visited an elderly home and joined a campaign about fungus. The elderly home was a joy to see even though the conditions often are difficult for the elders. They don’t have clean water, two elders share one room (10 squaremetres), and their food often consists of only Ugali. Ugali is maize flour. Even though the circumstances aren’t the best the elders are the happiest elders we’ve ever met, and both me and Nike has worked as assistant nurses at elderly homes in Sweden.
The campaign about fungus that we joined was a bus tour that travels to rural villages and Norwegian nurse-students dance and talks about fungus as part of a fun show for the villages. There were also Tanzanian students that made an excellent role-play/theatre about fungus to increase the knowledge in villages. It was a happy and cheerful campaign!
Asante sana Tanga! We’re enjoying every second of every minute!
We have now been in Tanzania for more than a week! The time runs so fast!
We arrived safely in Dar El Salaam on sunday morning, and took a local bus for a seven hours journey to Tanga. Apart from some misunderstanding about which bus station we where to be picked up at, which lead to two hours waiting… there was no problem at all! We are staying with the organisation Tanga international competence center – TICC. It is a Norwegian organisation that works on many local grassroot projects! They are supporting families so their kids can go to school, they work with schools, health centres, elderly homes and nutritional gardens and more. Mainly students from Norway, but also some from Denmark and us two from Sweden, stay here to do clinical training or to wright an essay as we are. The goal is to meet and learn from each other. TICC is really the best place to be for us! They are helping us with all practical stuff regarding our data collection! Wow 🙂 Also, we got swahili lessons! So now we can at least greet each other (mambo, habari gani..) say our name (mimi ni…) say thank you (asante) and some other good to know stuff! Now we just need to repeat, repeat, repeat…
Regarding our study, we have started with observations, to get an understanding about the health situation here. We have been to a health centre in Tanga, a sub-urban dispensary and a more rural dispensary. The last will be one of the places where we will do the interviews. It has been so interesting! The healthcare is very different here, especially regarding the environment, the equipment and the integrity. They also seem to have a culture where everyone takes care of each other, one’s health issues is the collectives health issue. Still a lot of things are the same, just a bit different due to their circumstances here.
We’ve also been to a local market, out on a boat tour and we also we have had some time to rest our heads in the sun.. So far we really love this place and we have learned so much! Now we are really looking forward to start the interviews and get to know this country more!