Tuesday, June 15, 2010

so much to say the trip so far

First off I would like to apoligize the internet the computers will not take any of are junk drives i have written pages of my stay in Africa and I will post it when i get home because this may be the only time i get to type. O it just worked yes !!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!So the airport was just like any other airport, it was very lucky that we had a TV in the seat I enjoyed watching Modern family, 30 Rock, and The Office. (Wow) I almost had a heart attack at the Amsterdam airport as I was busy having a conversation I realized I had forgotten my carry on FULL OF ALL MY CAMERA GEAR and as I tried to regain access to the airplane I was stopped by a locked door and after the longest ten minutes of my life my bag was found. I slept the next flight and went through a thorough 30 second passport check I entered The Republic of Tanzania. The temperature was in the low 50s and felt amazing. After a great dinner cooked by the Mama’s (which is Swahili for an elder woman) and I was impressed by the fresh food. We were all on an African high so we stayed up way too late. I woke up in the middle of the night and that is when I realized during the middle of the night that my mosquito net was all the way across the room and that’s when I realized I was covered in mosquito bites so ya the first night sucked.So Sunday we went to a church that was supposedly 10 minutes away, it was an hour as we made our way through a maze of corn and huge sunflowers. Well we arrived into a old brick building with no windows and as I sat down I was grabbed by the arm of a member of the church and was brought to the pastor and as I came face to face with the head of the church I was barraged with Swahili and told to sit (remember everyone else is sitting out in the benches not in front of the congregation). It is then when a National Geographic leader asked how I got up there and I told him I have no earthly idea (I was later told they thought I was the leader because I was taller than everyone which comes into play latter). They sang in Swahili as I tried to follow and then all of us stood in front and sang amazing grace. I forgot to mention that there was a person who was using keyboard beats run by an electric generator outside (even during the prayers). Towards the end of the service they still believed I was a leader so they found a translator from the village and had me speak IN FRONT OF THE WHOLE church (but thank goodness I was not afraid to speak in front of large audiences and in a foreign country). Also my phone didn’t work in Amsterdam or anywhere for that matter. I have managed to find diet cokes, yes dad even in Tanzania. I had the best coke of my life today it took two days but I finally found one. Today we went up into the hills to help build irrigation ditches. We worked alongside ten foot tall stocks of corn the soil is the most fertile soil I have ever seen. Today I had a very interesting story from a drunk guy who followed me for miles and did karate moves and then posed for the camera which was amazing. The people in Tanzania are very nice and keep calling me father because I am one of the largest people around which I am told is (Mad respect which I love) While digging trenches the villagers kept calling me the strong one because I was the best at pulling up a heavy black pipe . The day ended with us uploading photos and a great dinner prepared by the Mamas.Today we went back to work on the trench the community was very appreciative I talked to a man who said he used to be a Ambassador he told me that he was happy for us coming and told me that the people were peaceful people, that he loved Americans, and to tell Obama the people of Tanzania are peaceful (no comment). We also had African drummers come and perform and sing they were amazing. We also met some kids from the UAACC a charter school and they are helping us speak Swahili and we help them speak English they love photography.