•December 3, 2013 • Leave a Comment
The buses pulled out of the parking lot at 5:30 a.m. Friday morning. 10 hours later, we arrived at the International School of Moshi. 37 students and staff piled out of the buses. Ready. Set. Go. The weekend started with boys’ basketball and Ultimate Frisbee. Then came boys’ football, volleyball, girls’ basketball, swimming, and the Ultimate Frisbee finals. Then boys’ rugby and girls’ football. The kids were exhausted. And I don’t blame them a bit. They played hard. Really hard. And then everyone piled back on the buses for the long trip home. Game over.
Do you not know that in a race all the runners run, but only one receives the prize? So run that you may obtain it. Every athlete exercises self-control in all things. They do it to receive a perishable wreath, but we an imperishable. So I do not run aimlessly; I do not box as onebeating the air. But I discipline my body and keep it under control, lest after preaching to others I myself should be disqualified. (1 Corinthians 9:24-27, ESV)
•November 28, 2013 • 4 Comments
Thanksgiving in Tanzania
Unfortunately, this will be the last Notable November Note. I leave for the Moshi Sports Tournament at 4 a.m. tomorrow morning, and won’t have my laptop with me, and for some reason the WordPress app on my phone is completely useless and won’t let me edit or add anything on the site. Lame. But I’m sure being in Moshi coaching, photographing, watching the HOPAC students play volleyball, basketball, rugby, Ultimate Frisbee, football (soccer), and swimming will be an absolute blast!
As for today, its Thanksgiving, and even in Dar es Salaam, Tanzania, we celebrated in typical American style: turkey and football. Okay, so I had to hit two different celebrations to get both, but you do whatcha gotta do. I even scored the game-ending touchdown!
And not to downplay the wonderful food, fellowship, and football, my favorite part of the day was after a 2-on-2 game of basketball when one of my students told me I was the first girl he’d ever had to work to get around; every time he went to shoot, my arms were there. He even thought I played in school. I’m pretty sure the last time I played basketball was the Carroll High School student vs. staff match for the last day before Christmas break. And the time before that was the previous year’s student vs. staff match. Clearly, I’m committed to the sport. I enjoy playing; its just not as fun as volleyball.
•November 27, 2013 • Leave a Comment
School is out for Thanksgiving break — at least that’s what I’m calling it. This is the first year HOPAC has had Thanksgiving off. Obviously, Thanksgiving is not an international holiday, but it is certainly nice to have a break. Not that I’ll be taking much of a break. Tomorrow, I’ll be celebrating Thanksgiving with several other families, and then packing to leave at 4 a.m. on Friday for the Moshi Sports Tournament with two busses of HOPAC secondary students. It will be a fun, albeit busy, weekend. But I’m thankful to have at least a bit of a break.
In other news, it poured rain today. And apparently, when it rains like that, flying termite creatures come out of the ground and swarm anything that is lit at night. The road was covered with them (I’m glad I wasn’t on my motorcycle or bicycle — it would have been painful!), the dukas and even my house were surrounded with them. It was a bit terrifying, until I learned that they were harmless. I’m definitely thankful for that.
And finally, the picture. Yes, it is modern art. No, I don’t really know what it is. So I supervise a “study hall” in the Art room for two periods on Wednesday afternoons every week. The study hall is for the A Level Art students, and so they are completely self-monitoring, allowing me time to complete marking, read, or whatever else I need to finish for the day. Today, there happened to be just one drop of red paint on the table where I was working. It was wet, left from the previous class, and I had this crazy desire to just stick my finger in it. So I did. And then I created… that. Perhaps I should write in big dark letters next to it, “Out, damn spot!” in tribute to Macbeth. Or perhaps I should just leave it as is, in tribute to the last time I “finger-painted,” probably close to twenty years ago. And yes, I think there is still some green finger paint on the ceiling of our kitchen at home from that incident. =D I’m thankful for good memories.
•November 26, 2013 • Leave a Comment
Once again, the view on my ride to work was gorgeous. This time, I took the time to drive up to a high point a bit further up the road to be able to get a shot with my iPhone. Thunderstorms are beautiful, amazing works of creation. Though I had to laugh today after a huge clap of thunder made everyone in the class jump, myself included!
This morning, when it was still pouring down rain, the Lord reminded me once again of His grace. Oh the glory of those two little words, “but God.” I am so thankful to be redeemed. Bought and paid for!
“For the wages of sin is death, but the gift of God is eternal life through Christ Jesus our Lord” (Romans 6:23).
•November 25, 2013 • Leave a Comment
I could resist putting another puppy photo up for today. Really, I wished I would have gotten a shot of the bay this morning. It was raining just before I left for school and dark clouds covered the ocean, with bright gold light outlining the clouds and the sun pouring around the edges of the storm. It was breathtaking. But unfortunately, at that moment, on my bicycle, en route to work, it was impossible to take a photo.
So aside from the view this morning, I’m thankful for the weather. It is hot, like an Indiana summer day, and just as humid. Playing volleyball in an indoor gym tonight meant the sweat was just pouring off of me. But I didn’t feel warm–apparently my built-in air conditioning system was working well!
•November 24, 2013 • 1 Comment
Meet Amini (pronounced ah-mee-nee). I feel like I just acquired a child. But hopefully, I also acquired a large, strong guard dog that lives up to her breed’s reputation. African Ridgebacks were originally bred to hunt lions, and are capable of running alongside galloping horses for over 30 kilometers. This particular puppy is seven weeks old, female, and currently sleeping soundly in her box. Her name means, in Swahili of course, peace, reliable, faithful, or safety. An appropriate name for a guard dog, I think.
Today’s service at church was also exciting, for me at least. They had an extended worship service, which I always enjoy (even if I don’t understand the lyrics, I can still sing along). Then, a guest speaker gave the message. I was thrilled to realize that even though I was nowhere near understanding every word he said, I was able to catch a good portion of it. Progress! On that note, though, be in prayer that I find another language helper in the next month or so, as Happy, who has been meeting with me each Friday afternoon after school, is leaving for school tomorrow and will no longer be available.
•November 23, 2013 • Leave a Comment
I know I’ve said this before, but I love living next to the beach. For less than $3.00, I can spend the entire day at a beach resort, enjoying the sun, sand, and surf. This tends to be my regular Saturday destination. Its close. Its safe. Its beautiful. What else can I ask for?
Tonight, I had the blessing of being able to make dinner for some friends that I originally met in Iringa at language school, but who are also a part of the HOPAC community. It was fun to catch up a bit while eating spaghetti, salad, watermelon, and my new favorite, pumpkin bread.