Tanzania (P5) – Tired and Lost.

8th July. Morning.

So last night I was interrupted and after I was too tired to carry on writing.

Me, Kieran, Maddy and Ella got lost on the way back to my homestay last night and everyone came searching. We were ages and then two guys stopped next to us on a bike, think they were drunk but thankfully it was John and Isa’s baba and he knew my name and said they were following us as they knew we were lost. They then walked us to my house. I literally pounced on my mama when I saw her.

So I’d settled down and then Daniel turned up looking for Kieran who had left.

Then this morning I also found out that Joe was also looking for us too! Shit! Oh well, we’ve learnt where we went wrong, straight on at the big tree instead of right.

Last night was the first time I missed home properly but cute texts in a morning keep me going.

8 weeks today and I’ll be in the UK.

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Tanzania (P4) – Entrepeneurship and Relationship.

7th July.

Today was a good day, evening pretty interesting. So it started by giving a speech about what an entrepreneur is which Isa and Juma translated for me to a group of Tanzanians. It was pretty inspiring that they listened to me despite not knowing a word of English, I felt slightly empowered.

Then we did a bit of waiting around, as per, but I had some insightful conversations and a lot of sunbathing until I got too hot! At one point I had taken my flip flops off and they ended up in the middle of a group talk but being bare foot for a while was good.

I then learnt that my phone screen had been smashed somehow and now my selfie camera doesn’t work – first world problems.

Also, gossip of the day is that ginger, white, Irish John is in a relationship with bongo, Tanzanian Grace! Ooooo. Lets see how long it lasts.

We then all watched Kung Fu Panda 3, well most of it until the laptop cut out. Oh before that we went into town to do more surveys and I bought some material and it’s being made into a top and skirt for me. I get it tomorrow and it cost me a whole £6 equivalent!

Me, Kieran,

 

Tanzania (P3) – Mum’s Birthday, Shitting, Cold Nights

6th July

So as you can see I got interrupted at the end/middle of that entry. Today is mums birthday and I’ve managed to speak to her a bit, just wish the pictures she sent to me would download. Wish I was there but it’s just one of those things. This is hard to write when I have the Sam Smith album on and engaged in! Yeah, as I was saying. I’m trying not to sing out loud too. Alongside, not letting my snot dribble as I’m bent over writing this.

Today we got assigned stalls for the awareness raising tomorrow and I got Raleigh and took it upon myself to do the “What is an entrepreneur?” bit. I brought my pens and got on with a poster. I felt like the two others, both Tanzanians, were just pissing about and doing nothing so at one point it got a little bit heated. I realised how fiesta I can be but at the end of the day it works. I don’t want to look stupid tomorrow. Just frustrating when one of them was kicking up such a fuss about it, then proceeds to do nothing.

I felt proactive today for once which was good. We went into town and did some surveys in Swahili, so I felt useless but we found the tailors so I’m thinking about getting a kanga made. The material was beautiful and I held the baby. It was so cute and smiley!!

Now I’m singing out loud as Ana has gone to shower. I miss singing all the time.

The situation with Ali is so surreal at the moment when he tells me he misses me and wants to go travelling and stuff. It’s so good but I just hope it carries on and not just words because he means so much to me and we left in such a good place.

I’m also going to write this into my blog when I get home which will be great but not as good as writing watching the sun set out the door.

Sam Smith – Latch. Feels so appropriate right now. So does Make It To Me!

More 6th July – sorry about the mismatch in colour pens. I’ve just showered, by that I mean a bucket and cup to pour it over myself. I used my sarong for the first time and felt like a proper Tanzanian because I think that’s what they do!

Having a shit by torch light down a hole makes this feel so real but in an odd way still so surreal too. I’m just taking in the whole experience.

I’m not really missing home either because it’s such a different life and environment. If I was at home I would be doing nothing so that’s why I feel I can manage to immerse myself into it easier. And I’m motivated to make a difference.

Another weird thing is that I’m wearing more clothes to bed than I do at home. Like long pyjamas top and bottom, bed socks and a jumper. And then I’m in my 2-3 season sleeping bag and liner and I’m sharing a bed too. How crazy!

I’m so tired but I have tea still to have and find my Raleigh top for tomorrow. We can’t be an hour and half late tomorrow like we were today either! Beyond Bongo time. And no, Bongo out here isn’t racist, it’s what they call themselves.

My Mama is such a nice lady too, she likes me because I’m not fussy with food. She’s a good cook of rice and peas and the other day chunks of pig as they call it! Although, she thinks porridge is a drink which is so funny!

I feel like I’m writing just to fill this page right to the bottom even though there is so much I could write.

Here I don’t have to worry about home which is good like I don’t have a job when I get home and I could have failed second year but I can deal with that then, when needed to.

Right now I am absolutely living for the moment which is such an incredible feeling and I’m grateful for.

Thank you Government. 

Journal post 2 – Tanzania – 3rd July

First night here

The first thing is that today has given me such a massive culture shock. It is so insane. I am sharing my room with Anna, my Tanzanian counterpart, not also that but a bed too. Slightly odd but even more so is the fact that I’ve just had the first warm water shower since arriving yet it was definitely the coldest seeing as I was in a brick hut with just a bowl and a cup. Being under the stars is ever so slightly liberating though!

I finally got a sim card today but barely managed to use it because we’ve been so busy. Madi ended up sharing with someone in her family and wasn’t comfortable with it so they thought that I would be. Bollocks to that! So we’ve been all over trying to sort that.

The village is huge though and quite scary when you are the only white person (mazungu) – I was walking with Francis – is intimidating. I will definitely get lost at some point.

The best advice: be kind

Kindness, what is it?  Is it a feeling? A thought? An action? 

I can’t quite decipher this for myself but what I do think is that it is the best advice anyone could be given. I feel like the term kind or kindness is an umbrella for many different things. Some of us might see being kind as giving to charity, some of us might see it as making someone a cup of tea without asking (typical Yorkshire example). But in reality, if you’re just that little bit kinder in whatever sense, it’ll probably get you further. It’s more of a link to positivity in a way which as a person we portray through our actions and active citizenship. If you’re in a bad environment, physical or mental, the kindness in whatever sense of others will, hopefully, guide you. So does this mean being kind is just being yourself? Is kindness not from within but from within others? 

When you are in a place where you can recognise the need to stop and think, and be kind and recognise others needs and your deminishing selfishness and start occupying selflessness, that might just be when you become a notably kind person. But there’s only one person who can have an initial state to think about this and that is yourself

Surely your living your life for others and not your own greed would be better, right

Like I said being kind and kindness is different to everybody so it may not always be recognised but I suppose as long as you have love in your heart, positive thoughts and a kind soul, your life will be worthwhile. 

Not sure if any of that made sense because I’m tired but I just wanted a short post on kindness as I reflect on my personal development, how I want to develop and how I am presently developing. 

Be kind. 

Journal post 1 – Tanzania – 2nd July

I’m sharing my journal that I wrote in Tanzania. This is the first post! It’s very honest and I’m gonna copy word for word! 

After a week of training in Morogoro, we are now finally on a 14ish (bingo time!) journey. We are staying in Mbeya tonight then another 11 hours tomorrow to get to the village. We are currently driving through a national park. It is so breathtaking. There are mountains and hills everywhere. It’s so stunning. Genuinely feel privileged (?) to be in this beautiful country. We’ve seen elephants, baboons, giraffes, zebra, antelope and buffalo – all in the wild! It’s incredible. It’s starting to sink in now that it is finally time to go into village and help these young people. 

The Tanzanian volunteers are great too although crazy to think that we’re going into the type of villages they are from. The whole process for the, is gaining education and as much as we (UK) will be learning, I think the benefit was more of a personal development stance. I have already learnt so much about business and how to build the foundations – okay slightly distracted by Without Me by Eminem right now so I lost my thought! Currently sharing my music with my Tanzanian TL, Francis. Not sure what he thinks like. 

So, training was so much fun, even though very tiring. It was the most amazing experience to have everyone in the same place, alol eager to learn and the banter has been on absolute top form. I’m going to miss having all the lads around. I spent a lot of time with them, especially Tom. Everyone started to think we were shagging or something but he’s like my brother! We just vibe off each other and just get each other. It got quite immature at some points and was ridiculous tbh. Our echo is close to his which hopefully means on treks we can see him and Rory. He’s pretty hard to read but sound. 

Palladio is on now. Wow. 

My group is alright too. There’s John and Kieran from my training weekend and they seem okay to vibe from. Kieran is funny and us and Connor had a good chat about happiness yesterday which… (page turn) helped us to see each other perspectives and a little insight into us all. I’ve spoken to the girls a bit but Mandy and Lucie are really close and Ella is just a bit different. We will see. My UK TL is sound though, it’s gonna be 9 more weeks of bants! 

So the squatting for the toilet is new but thinking about it, quite hygienic too. Still haven’t got used to the cold showers though. It’s been a dipping head under business! I’ll get there. 

The food is gonna get so grim if it carries on like it has this week with rice and beans daily. I’m missing fresh fruit and veg. Mostly veg because we’ve had watermelon even though I don’t like that either, and an occasional banana or orange. I didn’t eat anything last night, it was gross. Just don’t get why it’s all served on top of each other when you have a full plate. Muffin mama came so it was all good. Chocolate and banana muffins! 

3 and a bit, peace.

So, this morning has been a good one to say I’ve done literally nothing.

This morning has been a weird one thinking about the last week that I’ve had and theres one thing that has been playing on my mind. Well actually not just this morning but most of the week. I received a very unexpected phone call from my ex boyfriend last Saturday which wasn’t an issue but was one of the oddest things I have experienced.. I was stood outside Earl of Doncaster waiting to go into a wedding talking to him.

We spoke about a lot of things and I’m happy for him that he has finally done everything that I wanted him to do while we were together. I don’t know if he’s done it because I was holding him back, which I hope not, or that he didn’t need to while he was with me. Who knows? But I am genuinely happy for him. He told me that the day previous was a weird one because it was the date we were meant to be going on holiday, a date which I hadn’t even thought about at all due to so much going off with me going volunteering soon and uni and stuff. It struck me as an ‘odd’ thing to say really considering he is now with someone else, but I suppose you never forget these things. Although, I did.

I feel like I am finally at peace with the last 3 and a bit years though, what happened and the indicators to us both that should have meant we split up way before we did. I think when you’ve been with someone for that long, you just have that fear of being on your own and I am sure we both felt like that until one day it just sort of snapped for him.

I’ve never hated him for it though, never. Maybe I knew deep down that the relationship we had was mostly incredible whilst it lasted and we were good for each other but sometimes you just have to let go. That phone call the other night was finally what I needed to let go. As much as I nearly cried because we mentioned his niece.. I nearly let everything go but I held it together. It is becoming easier to not have her in my life, but I still see pictures of her growing up and it is so heartwarming to know that for 2 years I had the privilege of being in her life and seeing it first hand. But I’ve grown up now, I’ve moved forward and I am very proud of myself for this.

I manage to get myself in some right situations though but I’ll always come out stronger from them. I think I again, finally, understand that I just need to go with the flow and chill out a lot more.. which I have done. Since being single, I am a lot less of a stress head and it’s great.. I feel so much more at ease with everything in my life.

I am actually, very, very happy.
– although, I do miss being in a relationship.. but that’s just who I am as a person. I think I am very insecure on my own sometimes and having someone there just to be like ‘Oh you’re doing fine.’ is great. BUT on the other hand I have learnt to do that myself. I could have an argument with myself for days about this but never mind. I would like someone to just travel the world with me though, that would be fun!

There was a little patch I went through where I was so down and I have really picked myself up and learnt that you can’t live your life for other people and until you see that you’re never going to progress or move forward. I’m doing this for me now, and if someone else wants to join me, that’ll be amazing but if not.. does it really matter at the moment?

Yeah, all I want in my life is a family and a good man around me but I still have time for that. I think I need to stop worrying about the future and live for the moment.

Going to Tanzania is going to be such a highlight of my life and it is definitely going to show me who is there for me when I get back. I hope that things some people have said to me are true and they aren’t playing games but we will see and if they are literally like, it doesn’t matter because I will have learnt from it. This is time for me to learn about me and along the way give those less fortunate an amazing opportunity that they wouldn’t have had otherwise.

Don’t you just wish you could rattle words of an essay off like a blog post? Yeah me too, although I think that was technically a rhetorical question that I just answered myself.

Over and out, 

Abs xo