Well day 4 back in Tanzania & all is settling into place nicely. We have a dodgy sedan that we hope will rattle its way through the next 5 weeks, visas are on the way, we have phone &internet cards & have visited work & friends. We found a very little but colourful serviced apartment just out of town. It has bright red outside walls & lime green on the inside! We are all squished into 1 bedroom with no remaining floor space and the kitchen is so tiny you can't even open the fridge door more than a quarter of the way, but we think it will work out. Perks are that it is furnished (hard to find here), has great security 24hrs and best of all.... a cleaning &linen service by smiley staff! Yippee. No more hand washing sheets & towels in a bucket! We have a nice verandah & concrete play area & aross the road they have a lovely secure garden & lawn which we can use any time. There is also a restaurant for when we are feeling lazy that does room service for free.
Tanzania's electricity supply is being worked on meaning that there are daily blackouts at random times. It was off for 3 full days recently which meant most people lost any fridge/freezer stocks. On average, only 4 hours of power a day lately. Its been quite an adjustment. As soon as it comes on we race to plug in our phones, laptop, kettle & jump in the shower as its only hot when there's power. We have an electrician coming tomorrow to check things here as can also feel the current through the spoon when I cook on the stove & the power board was smoking this afternoon! Maybe the blackouts are a good thing! Its been quite a challenge to set up meetings with our work and for Adam to do his study but it should improve soon. I dont know how businesses manage to run. Most can't afford generators. We have a little gas bottle for cooking & boiling water for a hot sponge bath. The weather is lovely and warm and we had a torrential downpour today.
We went to visit our lovely gardener /guard Meshak, from our last stay with their little baby Zakaria (after our Zac). He's so cute! Very relieved to see how healthy he looks & how well he's growing. This is despite poor Meshak not having found any work apart from an odd day or 2 in the 3 months since we left. A day's labour here earns him about $1.25. There is an existing security guard at our new house but we are trying to create some sort of work for him whilst we are here.
Whilst visiting, we saw a procession of chanting Maasai weaving down through the fields. Got rushed down to see it by Meshak's brother. Disturbingly though it was the escorting of the boys for the very important circumsicion ceremony that enters them into manhood. The frightened boys (aged 13 up to 20) were in the centre of the walking group with grey wraps rather than red & white rather than brown sticks. They were in the centre to prevent them from running away. We were proudly told they use a sharp stone for the procedure & no antisthetic & the boys are not to make any noise during the cutting. Did not know how to react. Thank goodness little Zac won't ever have to go through this.
Today we visited the new Plaster House rehab centre where I'll be working & it looks fantastic. It's going to be a much nicer place for all involved with running water, toilets & lots of space. Of the 60 odd kids, we know about 4 from last time. It was lovely to see them & all the staff. Tomorrow we'll go to Adam's school. Starting to recover from the trip & looking forward to getting our hands dirty again here. Trying hard to keep up the Italian with Z and Z. Our neighbour for the next fortnight speaks Italian so getting a little bit of practice here & there. Italy already feels like a long time ago! Boo hoo! Ciao!