Thursday, June 14, 2018

Flag Day. Not a holiday here, though we do see a lot of Tanzanian flags in our travels.

A few brief notes about interesting stuff for today—

  • The crew comes up with some good ideas for lessons. Jana makes a safety pin float in a physics lesson on surface tension, and the kids are attentive all the way through. Olivia does some rhythm work in music with clapping and slapping the table, and the children seem to get the idea of the different rhythms. One of the challenges here is making do with what you have. We learn that you don’t really need a lot of expensive plastic stuff—or a computer—to get the point across.
  • We have stacky-uppies for lunch. I hear those called haystacks back home. You throw some rice and chicken in a bowl and then pile other stuff on top of it as you wish. Chopped green peppers, tomatoes, onions, pineapple, coconut, sweet & sour sauce, all kinds of stuff, whatever you feel like. Very good. Can’t believe they didn’t have any anchovies, but I guess not everybody has my taste.
    • Footnote: what’s the great advantage of liking anchovies on your pizza? You get the whole pizza to yourself.
  • In the afternoon Liv gets her hair braided by Mama Lucy, who does that a lot for the girls at Tumaini. Nice cornrows, really well done. Braiding here traditionally involves the insertion of extensions in a matching color; the girls walk down to a salon just down the road to get some hair extensions to use. Most of the girls are planning to get their hair braided in the next few days. Kind of a team tradition.
  • Around the same time some of the crew walks down to the lake with some of the girls, where they see some boys swimming and then make a house visit on the way back. Dropping in like that is expected here; it’s not at all impolite. And house visits are a great way for the team to see indigenous culture at its most natural.
  • Also in the afternoon, the carver from last Saturday’s craft fair brings 3 special-order “Karibu” (“Welcome!”) signs by. The girls are excited to get them. They’ll serve as great mementos.
  • And late afternoon, Gabby and Katlyn make another batch of chapati chips, this time with fresh guacamole from yesterday’s trip to the market. Wow. That is really, really good, most especially hot out of the fryer. I believe I could eat too many of those with no effort at all.

A word of thanks to God. My foot has healed very nicely over the past view days. It is still painful occasionally, and it’s not past the risk of infection, but it’s certainly functional, and I’ve told the crew I expect to be back in the saddle tomorrow, able to assist with tutoring and other things as they need it.

I want to say a word of commendation to the crew for their effectiveness in functioning in the virtual absence of the designated leader. My need to immobilize and sanitize the wound has meant a lot of time spent in my room when I would normally be out and around helping, and they’ve carried out their responsibilities with minimal input from me. Rachelle and Katie are better qualified than I am to answer their questions, of course, but they have full-time jobs, and the plan was for me to carry the bulk of that load. I don’t question God’s good providence, but I’ve been highly frustrated by the change of plans, and this team has adjusted with professionalism and excellence. Good for them. You can be proud.

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Dan Olinger

Chair, Division of Bible in the BJU School of Religion.

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