Wednesday, November 30, 2005

Eu falo Portguese e Sena?

Boa Tarde, Muwanga?
Ndawanga, peno imwe.
Ndawang, Obrigada.
Ine ndini Chelsea. Ine ndinenda a donde, Sofala. Munanguan dinenda scola ca funzissa. Ndissafuna on amaningui Mocambique!

Taenda, Chelsea

(Good afternoon, How are you?
Iºm fine, and you?
Iºm fine as well thank you.
My name is Chelsea and I am going to live in Dondo, Sofala. I goig to be a teacher. I want to travel around all of Mocambique. Later, Chelsea)

That's right people i am learning how to speak the local dilect of Sofala, Sena, and to make things even more complicated, i'm learning Sena in Portuguese. My notes are entirely in Portuguese, i hate to say it, but i am seriously impresed with myself.

Quicky udate

I am going to live in Dondo, Sofala. Sofala is in teh center region on the coast. Historically its important to Mocambique because it boasts the port city of Beira, ill be 45 min from there, which was a major trade avenue with Zimbabwae and South Africa. But, dring the Portugues colonization much of the trade was directed to Eastern Asia away from Africa. Sofala has a really interesting political history, because it was a strong hold and some claim the birth place of RENAMO... the opposition to FERLIMO during the civil war... RENAMO was funded by South Africa and Rhodesia, becasue these coutnries wanted to destabalize the black mocambiquan govt )FERLIMO) that came to power... god, i had no idea how far the effects of South African Aparthied stretched. So Im really excited to live in a nother post conflict situation should prove interesting.

I had Thanksgiving Mocambiquan style, boiling a vat of potatoes over an open flame for 10 hours, chicken instead of turkey, and off course rice and kovi were served. but all in all the food was good, the company warm, and the wine plentiful. Yes, i got a bit tipsy with the American Ambassador!

On a sad note My cell phone was stolen last weekend at the discotheque... ill try to purchase another one. sympathy emails and or donations will be accepted ;)

Saturday, November 12, 2005

Patience is more than a virtue, its a way of life

If i learn one thing in the next two years it will be patience! Life here is slow, each event or task is sandwhiched between half an hour of waiting, for no apparent reason. people don~t ask why, they merely are content to sit and be, and then for no apparent reason the program, or what not will commence. If i can learn to sit and be I will be happy here... American culture has engrained in us that waiting or unstructured time equals unproductivity and slothfulness. But, like a cross cultural warrior im trying to overcome this, and using the time to jsut become aware of myself, my breathing, my surrounding, validating the time for what it is life. Very much thanks to Sarah light who gave me Peace is Every Step, much of this zen~mediative words a spout are inspired from ideas found in this book.

Some quick updates

1. Everyone needs a little Pologomy in their life.

I learned last week that father, seniour chefe (ie sherieff of my town) not only has one adoring wife, BUT 3 Wives. Yes folks, that is right. Pologomy is still widly practice in Mocambique, im leaving with his primera mulher (first woman) so this family is definatly better off. The kids across the stree that live ina partly constructed cement house, which is missing a roof, i learned are not my cousins, but his second wifes children. But, his second wife lives in Maputo (capital city) so ghis 13 year old daughter takes care of the 4 children. Bit your ethnocentric tounge chelsea. His third wife lifes in Xai Xai, the city inwhich he was born... so he travels there a few times a year. So my father has around 15 kids, the family situation gets sticker by the minute. Its ahrd for me not to lose respect for the man. But by Mocambique he is a good man-- he has three beautiful woman, healthy children, and he is a good father (provides money, doesnt drink too excessively, and is not physcially abusive). I am coming to realize it will be close to impossiable to date, seeing mozambiquan men donºt understand teh word monogomy and their manhoods is judged on there number of girlfriends.... only time will tell.

2. The Traveling Bacia

Literally my livelihood is in my Bacia, a green plastic bucket that i depend on! So let me take you through the day in the life of my Bacia.

Night

I fill my Bacian with water from the well in my yard for my bucket bath shower, third of the day. Afterwards I fill my Bacia with more water and bring it into my room. After Dinner the Bacia is then used to wash my hands, face, and brush my teeth. Then, this sounds really gross, but everyone does it in mocambique bc its to dark to go outside at night, I pee in the bacia! and don~t you all front like you dont have to pee in teh middle of the night, its out of necesity.

Morning

Empty the Bacia into the bano. clean the bacia and then use it to take a bucket bath shower, then my dirty socks and running closthes are soaked in the bacia.

Afternoon,

Remove the dirty running close, use the bacia to collect water to pure through my filter. I have to Boil and Filter my water here. Then the Bacia is filled for the 2nd bucket bath shower. The Bacia gets to rest between lunch and dinner, much needed and well desereved.

i thought this would provide an interesting insiet into my life... Chelsea and her green Bacia.

3. ESL teaching has begun...

We started model school this week, where kids voluntarily come to school on their summer break, because its summer here. It feel so good to teach, and the kids really respond to my lessons. although sometimes a little too much, i had 2 students in my 9th grad class ask me out. its wierd here, because in 9th grade people are anywhere from 13 to 25... i told them private tutoring wasnt part of my policy. The whole dynamic between teacher student is crazy, is commonly accepted fro female students to sleep with male teachers to get a passing grad, were talking 12 year old girls. but i have to keep my feminist mouth shut! diffcult to say the least. Next week im teaching my 9th graders how to structure a paragraph, woo hoo!

I

Sunday, November 06, 2005

Taking a Ride of the Roller Coaster

Roller coaster of my emotions that is! I've been up, down, back, forth, and inside out this past week... So on Wednesday I woke up at 3:30 to embark upon the long awaited and much needed site visit (aka go stay in a volunteer at there site for 5 days to hang out and party). We took only midly overcrowded Chappa 4.5 hours norht to the small town of Malehize, which is definatly in the Bush- very few houses have running water and electricity, there is a small market the sells only tomato, onion, lettuce on a good day, eggs, potatoes, soda, and the staple of beer. I spent 3 days sleeping and laying out on a straw mat reading. I desperatly needed time to decompress, living with a house family is not easy, and id didn't realize the stress i was under and tell i left it. It was fabuluos to not eat rice at every meal as well.

This weekend was amazing-- one of the volunteers hooked us up with a FREE beach resort house! Were 20 people came to drink beer, eat well, swim and tan. Late nights of talking drunking politics and midnight skinny dipping in the Indian Ocean. I have never felt more a live. There is somthing so liberating, almost like a return running naked in the starlight... amazing.

Now I return to my host family for 5 weeks of intensive model school- where i teach everyday practice lesson planning, then i go to sight to my own house, thank god.

Hope everyone is well. Keep working your magic and making change.

on a side night, mozambique is teaching me patience and the value of unstructured time, a challenge to say the least.

(My views do not represent those of the US govt of peace corps) I just found out i have to include that in my blogor it could be shut down, i let you make the comments about our totalitarian government.