Update & Pics’

I promised pictures and here are a few. One day it was 35 C and I honestly don’t know how I made it through that day. It was a little too warm and of course, I decided to go for a long walk just that day haha only to realise “yeaaaah maybe NOT the best decision”. But let me not complain, it is actually really nice to not be freezing all day all night :p.

Tomorrow I’ve been here for a week already which is kind of fast and still slow. Everything goes much slower here in Tanzania compared to Sweden. It can be both a good and bad thing. For example, on Thursday I spent all day trying to reach one of the organisations that I am supposed to interview and they never answered. Not only that I actually wasn’t able to reach them from Sweden either. But worry not. I have good news. A lady that works there answered my call on Friday and I should be able to go see them in 2 weeks. Somehow, it is also nice that people take things lightly here. It feels like people are not so stressed about life here as in Sweden….

Just today I was chatting with a guy about certain things that can make life stressful, and he told me “yeah you see life can be quite difficult sometimes but there isn’t much one can do about it. If you sit around and wait for something to change in order for you to start living, it’ll never happen. You might as well just enjoy life and take things as they come”. I couldn’t have said it better. I have already met people here quite randomly and had intresting discussions about all sorts of topics.

That is one thing I love about Tanzania. People are very open and nice here. These few days while I have been doing a loot of reading and getting a deeper knowledge about my thesis topic, I have realised how much it helps that I actually do speak swahili and am familiar with the cultural context of this city. It is easy to get around and I do not have troubles finding my way, more or less. This city is way too big for me to know it properly inside out. It is kind of funny how at least on the outside I look just like everyone else and can go pretty much unnoticed on the streets. One person even asked me “are you sure you aren’t from here? You look and speak like us!?” But once we get into deeper discussions it is very obvious that I have a different mindset than some of the people I have met.

Ok, last thing about my thesis stuff. My supervisor in Sweden has approved my research questions yeey, and I have sent in one exam yippi. Tomorrow I am meeting my contact person here in Tanzania. She is the headmistresss of the Barbro Johansson School. I’m going to conduct a small scale ethnograpic study at the school for one week and see how things work there. I will also have one focus group session with some girls at the school where we will discuss the topic ‘gender (in)equality’ and what experiences they have had of it, if any. And then I also plan to interview the headmisstress and her assistant. I hope one week is enough, because I understand that they have their own schedules at the school. Otherwise I will have to go again the following week. So, next week I will be in a different region 😀

I am really glad because it has only been a week but I have gotten so much done already. I’ve actually read most of the things that I had to read and been able to get hold of both my organisations, finally. The Barbro Johansson School is funded by JOHA Trust, which is one of the organisations I am interested of learning more of. And the headmistress, my contact person, sits on the JOHA Trust board, just to clarify why I’ll be going to that specific school.

One last note, besides from all the studies, don’t think that’s all I’m doing. Well, it kind of is. But I decided since I have a good flow for now, I’ll try to study Mon-Fri and on weekends meet up with friends and some distant relatives. I thought this is a good idea because I get to have study breaks. Change environment and do something fun. This weekend I visited a few friends and went to different parts of the city

My friend Vee & I on the metrobus going downtown


This is getting to long. Take care and see you next week!

The view
sharing the Swedish culture of ‘fika’ XD
THIS latte was soo good!
Studying at a café by the ocean
“moderate” weather… Only 35 C

Lizard & escaping the traffic jam

Hello everyone!

I finally arrived in Tanzania a few days ago. I know I’m quick in writing and it’s because I feel the internet I am using is quite unreliable. So I am trying to make the best of it.

As you may have noticed hehe, I will be writing the blog in English because a) I study in English & all thesis progress will be written in English. And b) all my family and friends can follow the updates, without being “left out”.

First of all, I want to start off by saying I AM ALIVE, this is more to my family that have been bombarding my phone asking “did u arrive?”. YES. I did. And it is suuuper hot!!! When I arrived, it only took 30mins to get through the immigration & passport control + collect my luggage, so a big round of applauds for the airport staff. Usually, it can take up to even 2 hours. So this was beyond awesome. So, what have I done these few days?

I have slept! I was so exhausted by the journey. And when I finally felt a little alive, I had a friend help me with getting a sim card, setting up internet etc etc. Oh and I found a lizard in my kitchen. I feel so welcomed 😀 On a more serious note, I have studied. I have been writing my literature review and some other ‘fun’ assignments that I have to send in to my supervisor (in Sweden) next week.

Also, I have managed to escape the hectic traffic of Dar es Salaam! Two days in row! Now, if anyone has ever been to Dar es Salaam you would know that the traffic jams here can get quite crazy and tiresome. So, me escaping it for 2 days is also beyond awesome. I hope I did not just jinx my own luck lol. Anyhow, I am supposed to start the ‘real’ thesis work next week, tomorrow I am dubblechecking with my supervisor if that is still possible and hopefully by the time I write next time, I have started the empirical thesis work. OOH and I am so bad with taking pictures… But, in the next blog I will post some pics.

I hope all of you are doing well in lovely Sweden. Did I mention it is 31 C here. And sunny 😀 hehe

See you in the next post 🙂

Iyi aksamlar :)

Not quite what I expected..
This is because I had to redo one part of my practical work for the master thesis. I had to retake the saliva tests, which is important for a program called Cariogram. Saliva measurement is one of the influencing factors for the incidence of caries.
I use the Cariogram program as visual feedback to show the mother-child pairs the caries risk and what is needed to be changed to reduce the caries risk in the future. This is a good and simple method to show which factors that affect the disease and at the same time giving mothers an education about the disease and oral hygiene. This has to be redone on 50 patients. While we took saliva samples and made measurement, we also applied fluoride varnish on the children and rewarded them with balloons and stickers to the children, and to give them good memories of their visit to us. Some of the children were difficult to handle because they were afraid and could not sit still. This became a challenge, but with the help of the mothers and knee to knee method, we implemented what we had wished for. It remained 20 patients because everybody couldn’t show up.
I also got the chance to visit another village near Kirikkale called for “Hasandede” together with two other dental students and two dentists. It was full of families who had moved from Mardin, Urfa and Syria as refugees. We investigated and fluoride varnished 30 children. We had so much fun laughing with the children and we played together. I really saw how happy they were because of our visit and how much they appreciated what we did. It felt incredibly good inside.
God kväll gott folk (Iyi aksamlar)