Friday, June 13, 2008


Greatings from Tanzania! I have been in Arusha for one week now and I am loving it. I arrived to the city of Arusha last friday after a long bus ride from Dar es Salaam (11 hours!). I was greated at the bus station by Mama Tesha, who is the founder of St. Margaret's Academy.

I am staying at Mama Tesha's home which is very nice. I have my own room with a bed large enough to sleep an entire family. Mama and her family are taking great care of me, and it has been fun playing soccer and coloring with by little brother Abba who is in second grade.

Over the weekend, we attended a going away picnic for some other Americans that had been here for the past few weeks. One of the families was the Stets from Northfield, so it was fun to see some familiar faces.

Mondy was my first day at St. Margaret's Academy. I was introduced to all the students and staff and given a tour of the school grounds. St. Margarets is located about 8-10 miles out of the city of Arusha in Kisongo, a village surrounded by farms and the Masaai people. On tuesday I began teaching. I am teaching 3rd grade science which is a lot of fun. We are currently doing a unit on weather changes, and farming. Next week we will be going outside to look for some African critters to inspect. I am not sure what we will find, but I am sure they will not be creatures that could be found in the school yards of Minnesota.

Adapting to the time zone and culture was initially very hard, but by now I am used to it. Dealing with the language barrier has also been difficult, but I am lucky because Mama Tesha and everyone at the school speaks English, including all the students. I am trying to learn as much Swahili as I can, but it is coming slowly.

Thanks again to all of you that have supported me. Without your help this trip would not have been possible. Internet access is not that easy to find, but I hope to make another post soon.


Anonymous said...

wow Matt. this is so sweet. i love hearing all about the things your doin while you're there! miss you!

asmilani said...

Jambo Matt, its so exciting to read your blog! Life sounds wonderful for you, I am so jealous. I can't wait to hear all the amazing stories you will have when you come back! Be safe, have fun, and see ya later!


mo said...

DUDE!!! Glad to hear everything is going swimmingly. Hope it continues that way. I understand what the whole language barrier thing is like. Without my sister Becky around in Egypt, we would have been screwed. Post as much as you can and take as many pictures, even though they won't do justice to what you experienced.