A Day In The Life #16

Friday, March 22nd

 photo tzaditl11_zps1d3e3278.jpg
Traditional fake sleep photo

 photo tzaditl111_zps7bb951e5.jpg
Time check. Anything after 7.30am counts as a lie in.

 photo tzaditl112_zps011b6ec3.jpg
Checking the cash I have to hand. This is what 2 million looks like. It is 1/8th of my total spend this trip.

 photo tzaditl113_zps22a3403d.jpg
The first stop of the day is not until 10am, so I check what’s happening in the world.

 photo tzaditl114_zpsace911d5.jpg
And here is the first appointment. I am collecting many of the completed uniforms from the tailor.

 photo tzaditl115_zps3a28b34c.jpg
I hand over the remaining balance to Mr Fwejeje. I have had around 50 made here and 20 in town. Each costs approx £7.

 photo tzaditl116_zpsbdf51fe0.jpg
An early lunch is had as the next job starts at 1pm.

 photo tzaditl117_zpsd6b01eaf.jpg
Lunch is Chipsi Mayai – or a chip omelette in English.

 photo tzaditl118_zps03d42693.jpg
As we head to the school after lunch we spot Mr Julius. The government has been handing a few kg of food to those most in need in the village. He has just collected his share

 photo tzaditl119_zps5d266f43.jpg
Each year I arrange a group phone call between the blind school and a London primary school. The kids introduce themselves and ask questions about each other’s lives.

 photo tzaditl1110_zpsda7fd010.jpg
I had told them that if they spoke loudly and clearly I would provide sodas as a treat. Not all the children could have them right away as some were fasting for Lent and so had to wait until the evening.

 photo tzaditl1111_zps92af50ff.jpg
The blind kids who had been fitted up for a uniform then arrived to collect them – they are in the black bags.

 photo tzaditl1112_zps982796ad.jpg
I get cornered by Zenedea. She is blind and training to be a teacher. She is rather formidable and is always flanked by a posse. She is definitly the Queen Bee though.

 photo tzaditl1113_zps195b0de1.jpg
As I leave the school I am introduced to these two who had travelled 5 hours to visit me. The woman has a back problem and the man is blind. I tend to avoid helping people who turn up to see me but I could hardly send them off empty handed.

 photo tzaditl1114_zps1aae8759.jpg
Next up is a short walk to the shop with…

 photo tzaditl1115_zps16e05278.jpg
…Flora. She is 19 with a 5 year old child and both are blind. I give a little help by way of food, soap and other items.

 photo tzaditl1117_zps783e5f32.jpg
Next stop is the blind rehabilitation centre to distribute some items.

 photo tzaditl1116_zpsa32f53ee.jpg
The main project this year was supplying mattresses to the centre. Each family received 2. They sleep on sacks on the floor and had asked last year if I would consider providing mattresses in the future. Also in the pic are sacks of soap, clothes, toothpaste/brushes and other items.

 photo tzaditl1118_zpsd313f653.jpg
I was also there to hand out the seeds and medicines they had requested.

 photo tzaditl1119_zps259cbccb.jpg
Plus more uniforms

 photo tzaditl1120_zps8e9f723d.jpg
And some shirts from my sister’s school. The two at the front are twins who happened to be wearing shirts I gave out last year.

 photo tzaditl1121_zps4ce6d861.jpg
Before the mattresses get taken away we have a group photo.

 photo tzaditl1122_zps0878fdd0.jpg
Jared collects his

 photo tzaditl1123_zpse53a8da3.jpg
As does Leah

 photo tzaditl1124_zpsa214f90e.jpg
I give a hand (or a head) carrying them to the houses.

 photo tzaditl1125_zps48e3b021.jpg
I admit it, I am showing off now

 photo tzaditl1126_zpsb12a8dda.jpg
I make sure I get pics of each person with their mattresses to show to the sponsor in the UK

 photo tzaditl1127_zps1ec3f37f.jpg
As I go around the houses I spy this sign I had made for a previous project there.

 photo tzaditl1128_zpse2d71199.jpg
And more smiley faces

 photo tzaditl1130_zpsae39f172.jpg
Harry wants me to provide a water pump for his garden. He has to carry the water buckets by hand. I have said no though as it is unfair to favour one family over another in the centre.

 photo tzaditl1131_zps0e39d033.jpg
I head home and a quick storm comes and goes. It brings with it this rainbow

 photo tzaditl1132_zpsd902b47b.jpg
It also brings Frank. He is a very bright student, in the top few in the region, with excellent English who is one of the very few people to have passed his national examinations. He lives with his disabled aunt and has had to drop out of school for financial reasons. Having said I would not support any more people with education, I buckled with him. Shane, a friend in the UK and I have put enough money in a pot so he can restart in May

 photo tzaditl1133_zpsa8cfcf25.jpg
Now all the serious work is done, it is time to revert back to my default state of being silly.

 photo tzaditl1134_zps26ace0a9.jpg
I’m not sure where this monster came from (the toy, not the boy). I asked people what it was and noone knew. The closest they got was ‘Godzilla’. I tried explaining about dinosaurs but I think they thought I was pulling their legs

 photo tzaditl1135_zps3934eb12.jpg
Next is a visit from Hogra. I have already helped her start a small tea and cake selling business but she came to remind me I had promised her kids uniforms. Ooops. I handed her a ticket to take to the tailor and she seemed happy.

 photo tzaditl1136_zps8d3c9a2d.jpg
Dinner time. We have 3 cooks and a guard.

 photo tzaditl1137_zpsb81900e0.jpg
Rice, goat, salad and plenty of fresh fruit. We feed around 15 people each evening. For the kids, these few weeks are like when a seal puts their blubber on before the winter. After we leave, they will be back on basic rations until I return next year.

 photo tzaditl1138_zps81d6ddb9.jpg
The dog wandered by and was tempted in to the house.

 photo tzaditl1139_zps93935add.jpg
Also making an appearance was this cricket

 photo tzaditl1140_zps9b5b6f11.jpg
And this centepede. They are very dangerous with a strong poison in their tail. When the children are frightened of an animal then I know it is something to take seriously. We eventually track him down and kill him.

 photo tzaditl1141_zpsf3a8d0a6.jpg
In celebration the children prat around outside

 photo tzaditl1142_zps3b32b7ca.jpg
Next stop is Chamwino town, around 5km away. The teachers are taking us there for a drinking session.

 photo tzaditl1143_zps817cbe75.jpg
They had ordered us all half a chicken. Having eaten at home we were not too keen on the idea, but after a few beers we plouged through it. It was delicious.

 photo tzaditl1144_zpsb44ac758.jpg
We indulged for quite a while

 photo tzaditl1146_zps11507664.jpg
We had agreed to pay for the drinks, which costs £22, and the teachers covered the 5 chickens

 photo tzaditl1147_zps4247cfcf.jpg
Heading back by taxi – 4 in the back and me up front.

 photo tzaditl1148_zps2e129b2b.jpg
A later than usual night and after a busy day we found sleep came without much prompting.


About Imo & Tom Feilding

I'm in my 30s and work for the University of Bristol, I regularly visit Buigiri Village slapbang in the centre of Tanzania in East Africa. It is a very poor semi-desert area. I spend much of my time and money helping individuals improve their situation and I write about it on here.
This entry was posted in Uncategorized. Bookmark the permalink.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s