We have now spent 10 nights in Zanzibar as an end to our adventure. During these days we have also been accompanied by friends from home and have spent most of the days in the sun and at the pool. Zanzibar offered fantastic white beaches and variety of food. We also got to experience swimming with dolphins when we were on a snorkeling tour.
At the time of writing, we are at the airport in Dar es Salaam and are waiting for our departure home. There have been eight fantastic weeks in Tanzania where we have experienced a new culture and created many memories for life. However, we are now looking forward to coming home to Sweden and to meet up with loved ones.
Here comes a late update from our last days in Moshi. We spent most of the time refining our essay, but we had time to do two excursions. One of the days we visited a museum, the Chagga Museum, as a dominant tribe in the Kilimanjaro region. The museum was built by a man from the Chagga tribe, he himself collected the material and built up an example of how the Chagga population lives.
The next day we visited a waterfall a bit from Moshi. With the height in mind, the air was considerably cleaner and the climate was more pleasant. Unfortunately, the waterfall was not as powerful as it could be because the rain season is delayed.
Since our last update, we have experienced five days without power and hot water. After these five days had passed, we were then overjoyed to be able to take a hot shower and charge our phones. Another week has passed, and we have only nine days left here in Moshi before traveling to Zanzibar for sunshine and bathing. This week we have approached the end of our thesis and have received feedback from our mentor at Malmö University. It feels like a relief that our last work in our education is soon to be completed.
In addition to writing on the essay, we have also managed to visit the International School here in Moshi. We got to attend a lesson in history and one in global politics. The international school differed a lot in comparison to the local school where we conducted our interviews. At the local school there was a completely different authority from the teachers, for example, the students stood up until the teacher gave them permission to sit down. Followed by the students answered the teacher in choir. When it comes to the international school, there were instead several similarities with how upper secondary schools work at home in Sweden. There were also considerably more resources at the International school, they have both swimming pool, boarding house and cafe. Unlike Sweden’s upper secondary schools, the international school have its own seamstress, but also staff who handled the copier and so on.
Yesterday we visited a women’s cooperative who has a small shop here in Moshi. Among other things, we bought some signs made out of banana leafs that are suitable for giving to loved ones. We also managed to find some gifts for our relatives’ children, including The big five, which was sewn in African textiles and lions that were handmade in ebony wood.
Last week has been a bit chaotic here in Moshi. We were at our favorite place and worked on our study. From nowhere, there came a real storm and it rained in a way we had never seen before. The rain season is on the way and we have talked about the fact that we have to expect a lot of rain, but we didn’t think it would be like this! The trees fell over the roads and power lines were destroyed. We still have no power from the lines, but our accommodation has a generator now. This means that we can now charge our computers and phones a couple of hours a day.
The water has also been a problem during this time, we have almost no pressure in the shower nor any hot water. So, we have cold and quick showers in the evening. And in order to shower the hair, we first fill a couple of 1.5-liter bottles to be able to get the shampoo and conditioner off the hair. After these events we really understand how dependent we are on electricity and water.
Despite some bad luck with the weather, life has continued. Among other things, we have been to a birthday party to celebrate our friend Sanna. The party was at a restaurant called Samaki (It means fish in Kiswahili). During the evening we got to experience some traditions that are made when it is someone’s birthday. For example, the person who celebrate his or her birthday should feed his guests with a piece of cake, then the person being fed will sing Happy Birthday.
Given that it has been a little cooler weather, we have also done some shopping. Several fabrics have been purchased, some souvenirs, a bag and several kangas.
See you soon!
The last several days in Tanzania has been educational in many different ways. Firstly, we have learned to appreciate the Swedish schools and their equipment. For example, there is only one computer at the entire school (Msiriwa Secondary School) that only the principal and assistant principal use. The teachers also do not have their own work spaces, there is a small room that everyone shares with a standard that we are not used to. There is also no copier so if the teachers want to copy something they have to go to town which is about 30 minutes away by car. The teachers have only a few textbooks, blackboard and chalks to use as teaching materials. Despite this, they still seem to get into teaching that makes the students manage their finals. Impressive, to say the least!
A rim used as a bell
Secondly, we have learned to endure a heat that cannot be described in words! We were going on an excursion to Lake Chala where we had thought it would be nice to walk a bit in the forest and then cool off in the water. That was not the case! We had to go for an hour to the lookout spot in the pressurized heat of the savannah environment, so no shade! And after a while at the lookout point, we turned and went the same way back. Dizziness was severe, breathing difficult due to height and sweat flowing. But we survived! Then we came to the slope, where you come down to the water. Emelie did not have any difficulty getting down other than she slipped on the gravel a few times. Josefin, on the other hand, has never challenged her fright of heights in that way before! The sweat ran worse than ever and she got some help the last bit down. But we survived this too!
Last but not least, we met our remote relatives at the pool. It was a wonderful meeting and we recognized ourselves in the individuals…
We have now finished two out of eight weeks in Tanzania, and we are now having a functional living, more or less. We have, among other things found our self a Bajaj driver, as we now are regulars with. We also bought a washtub and some detergent, so we can now wash our clothes. Monday to Friday we are putting all our effort into our study, and we found a perfect place to do this, which has very nice food and a good garden to sit in, Maembe. Saturday and Sunday we spent on our newfound relaxing place. Honey Badger, which is a hotel with at a pool, which we can use for a fee.
Bajaj Driver, Patrick!
Cleaning our clothes!
In our new everyday life we also found a new favourite perfume, which is the only perfume we use here. It is called “Mygga”, and we use it like we are teenage girls who just came over a bottle of “Date” perfume. It is especially good when you just shaved your legs, it does not burn… not at all, promise 🙂
Msiriwa Secondary School.
Our second week has just now passed, and we primarily focused on our research. Last monday we did our first visit at the school were we supposed to do our interviews at. We got to see Mama Mary, who is the headmaster at Msiriwa Secondary School. Last friday we did our two interviews with four female students. It went over our expectations even if we had to improvise a place were we could complete our last interview. The reason for this was lack of space and classrooms. Instead we had to sit in the garden on the grass, with at burning hot sun and 35 degrees. Overall it all went very well, but we were extremely tired afterwards. Despite this, we spent the afternoon and evening transcribing our interviews. Above all, it was interesting to hear what the female students had to say about Sexual and reproductive health and rights in school. Many wise words, but also some things that we difficult to understand through a swedish context.
Karibu tena, welcome back!
Our first week in Moshi, Tanzania, has been amazing and very busy. On the second day we went on a Safari in the nationalpark Tarangire and Ngorongoro. We had two amazing days were we got to see The big five and many more animals such as Zebras, baboons, hyena and so on.
This first week we also went to the Hot springs, wich is a place to swim and relax in the middle of the savanna. It was a long and bumpy ride because it is dry season. But when we came to the Hot springs it was all emerald green. It was really nice to get out from the hot heat in the town of Moshi to cool down and get some fresh air.
When this posts is published we just came back from a coffee tour outside of Moshi. We got to make our own coffee and it was really tasty, much better and very different than the coffee we drink in Sweden. It was also interesting to learn about the process of making coffee and to learn more about the local people and their culture. After this tour we feel like we appreciate the art of making coffee a lot more.
After this first week we have learned that everything in Africa takes a long time, there’s absolutely no stress. For example, you have to wait about twenty minutes to flush the toilet, nobody arrives on time and the dinner takes a long time to prepare. To summarize this week: Hakuna Matata!!