I have been in Morogoro for over a week now. Morogoro is at the base of this absolutely beautiful mountain (don’t worry, before I leave I am going to climb it) and it has a lot going on. When we first got here, we all stayed for 4 days in a gated Christian community center. From here, we were all (there are 39 of us) broken up into smaller groups of 5 and sent to our homestays throughout Morogoro. Each group of 5 has its own teacher and we all live within 5 minutes of each other. Everyday I walk to a secondary school to learn Swahili. On Fridays, all 39 of us meet up to learn how to teach. Everyone in my group is really nice. It is weird, we have only known each other for a little over a week, but it feels like I have known them forever!
Within the past few years, the number of schools in Tanzania has doubled, but the number of teachers available and the class sizes have remained the same. Tanzania is especially lacking in the science fields. Hence why I am here. Every year the president of Tanzania asks the US for 400 PCVs!
My training will only be 2 months, and then I will travel to Dar es Salaam where I will swear in, then the headmaster of my school will come and collect me and take me to my site. The first month after I get there school will not be in session, so I will have that time to settle in and adjust!
During training, we get to go on safari, travel and stay with another current PCV for a week, and Monday we are learning to cook some traditional dishes. We are going to attempt banana bread without an oven…I will let you know how that goes.
My family is so great too! My first day staying with them I accidentally put salt in my chai instead of sugar…woops…then I drank it because everyone was watching me and I didn’t want to waste it! Now every time I have chai they put salt next to it, and probably think I am completely weird…but I’m ok with that.
The kids are really cute (Ashley, you would LOVE it here). I gave my little sister Alicia a mechanical pencil and she carries it with her everywhere. She doesn’t speak any English (she is 9), but the other day she came and whispered in my ear ”your hair is beautiful”…pretty much the cutest thing ever. Whenever I come home the kids all run up to me and give me a hug, and Crispen (he is 5) goes around the house saying ”I’ll be back” in the terminator voice.
No Swahili class tomorrow!! Yeah! Now I just have to go study so that I can catch up! So much to learn!