Saturday, January 11, 2020

Day 5: A relaxing day in Iringa before the long weekend in the villages

Hamjambo (how are you)! Today, Jan. 9, was a relaxing day spent in Iringa before leaving for the long weekend in our villages tomorrow. We began our day with a breakfast in the Iringa Lutheran Center, prepared by our beloved Harrison, head chef of the Lutheran Center.
Today, January 9th, was a relaxing day spent in Iringa before leaving for the long weekend in our villages tomorrow. We began our day with a breakfast in the Iringa Lutheran Center, prepared by our beloved Harrison – head chef of the Lutheran Center. We then indulged in a village lecture from Professor Strykowski. This quick lecture focused on how we could deduce key parameters for proposed systems while still in the village. To end the torture, we took a brain break and climbed up Gangilonga Rock. This quick hike offered great views overlooking the city of Iringa from a large boulder on the northeast side of the city.

We then continued to climb up the large hillside that the rock is on, only to come to a dead end at the top of the hillside that offered no view of the city. After the hike, the team had worked up quite the appetite and had to break for lunch.For lunch, we broke up into our village groups to further prepare for the weekend. However, not everyone was able to make it to lunch with ease.

Britta Gantert, is today’s person of the day for the following. When the teams broke for lunch, we realized that someone was missing. Upon further examination, it was noted that Britta had managed to lock herself in her room at the Lutheran Center and desperately required rescue. The following is a picture of Britta yelling to the rest of the group asking for her roommate to come and let her out of the room.

Once Britta was rescued, the teams enjoyed a great lunch at Neema’s and Sweet Treats a few blocks from the Lutheran Center. During lunch the teams talked about potential strategies for what is to be completed once we are in the villages. All of the students then reconvened to attend a question and answer session with the employees of St. Paul Partners, the organization that is most knowledgeable about the villages we will be visiting to gain more last-minute knowledge. This helped to assist the students about what kind of questions and actions are to be completed during our weekend stay in the villages.

Once the students felt comfortable and prepared, the rest of the day was given to us as free time. We took advantage of this time to go to the local market to purchase unique fabrics. These fabrics were then brought to a local seamstress to make the students custom Tanzanian garments. Most of the women opted for jump suits, capes and dresses, while the men chose not to go with a dress and instead chose to get fitted for suits. The men found out that Will V. had the largest bicep circumference with 14.5”, beating Sam S., Jake P. ,and Sam M. by 0.5”. Congrats Will – keep up the good work. Some of the students chose to take a bujaji home from the market.

A bujaji is a common three-wheeled vehicle that is used as local taxis in Iringa. This bujaji ride further cemented the choice of person of the day as Britta attempted to pay the driver $10 for a $1 ride home. The driver, confused, gave her the money back and repeated his price as someone else paid for the ride home. Well done. Britta. The students, professors, St. Paul Partners volunteers, and University of Iringa student representatives then visited Sun Set Hotel for cocktails and dinner while overlooking the city of Iringa and of course watching the sun set behind it over the mountains.

We eagerly await Tomorrow's trip to the villages for the weekend to try and determine a solution to the villages’ water needs. Unfortunately, for those keeping up with our blog back in the United States, we will be radio silent for a few days as we will not have access to blogging while in the villages. Do not fret when not hearing from the group, as we are having a great time and being treated with the utmost respect from the villagers we set out to assist one week ago. Expect to hear from us again on Monday, with updates from each village and the great experiences we had while in them. Have a great weekend.

Peter D.