Saturday, October 22, 2005

She opens her land for you, out of rusty red blood emerges your matope houses, she is looking for life- bright skies, fiery sun, salty tears kiss the shore of Mozambique while fort prints are left by brown toes bearing there burdens of life. Walk in the roots of her rhythm, you have arrived, chelsea to find your place in a community of strangers, to make a difference, to teach, to learn, to give, to take, and to be humbled by the simply complex web of life.

I find myslef timidly approaching my task. First I had to relieve my mind that this is not an imperalitstic mission formed by George Bush to export Capitalism and American Culture. I am here becase the Mozambique government asked me to be. I am at the start of something beautiful, shaping the minds of those individuals who will dicate the outcome of this fragile country- the posibilities are endless and the vision so big. But in order to process my day to day reality the vision must be scaled down. Cross cultural exhcange is built by individuals interacting, success can be measured in new friendships, sharing new ideas, or a student who is inspired to learn, becuase it is these individuals that make communities, communities that make people, and people who create changes in their country.

I continue to grow here mentally, physcially, and spirtually, but no one could have prepared me for the amount of religion I would be bombarded with here. Were not talking touchy feely UU, were talking soul clapping bible thumpin church! My family goes to the type of church you can hear before you can see... their voices are not delicate and harmonies in the western fashion but deep and beautiful singing from somewhere I've never been before. The men sit on the left, the women on the right, while the children roam free in the back. Voices were accompined by drums and dancing, people move freely with out fear or upsetting some ancient traditonal worship. We sang for a solid 45 mintues, then the preaching began, every phrase reafirmed by an Amen I undrestood nothing because the bulk was in Chanaga.. then the doors were abruptly closed blocking out all light from the chruch and the people went into a trance like state speaking in Tounges- I think. I tried to find my 'happy place' but it was difficult due to the sheer volume in which people portrayed.... to cut the story short. I was asked to go into the front of the church and say a few words. I struggled to find words that could sit comfortably between my personal convictions and the evangelical church... I was somewhat succesful because I got a few amens and halleliuas

theres a story!

so write me at:
Chelesa Keyser
Corpo da paz
CP 4392
Maputo, Mozambique

Call Me 258-824-101-232

Love you all!

Saturday, October 08, 2005

Nao entendo...

The most used Portuguese phrase "i dont understand"

Well folks i survived my 17 hour plane ride to Maputo Mozambique just one week ago, but oh my god do i feel like i have lived a lifetime! So my first days were spent at Kaya kwanga a plush hotel where we got soo many shots like 8 and had intense orientation. This hotel was off the hizzy, the contestents of moZAMBIQUuan IDOL were staying there (yah for globalization american idol has even made it to mozam). so after 3 days of luxury we boarded chappas (12 passanger vans, except in Moz a minimum of 18 people are on each van)and rolled nto the narrow sandy streets of Barroi Fishe, the streets are lined with houses made of cement, rock. or reed, smiling phases emerged, mainly women wrapped inbeautiful barbirs that ere worn from the days work. Barley understing what our PEACe CORPS insturtcters were saying, one by one we wree booted out of the van- excitment and fear as i met my new family. So im runnin out of time. I have 3 brother and 3 sisters all living in a 3 room house, one of which is mine). I WAKE up everymorning at 5:30 to sweep and mop my room and the house, take a bucket bath shower (thre's no running water), and go to class until 5 or so. The languages classes are really intense but realy necessary. Times running out so know that i am happy here!