Monday, August 10, 2009

When It Gets Hard

So I made a list of things to keep me here the other day. It’s called “When it Gets Hard.” I spent the better part of a morning coloring it in and writing it out. It’s not really that long, but it helps to have these little reminders of what keeps me here. I don’t know if the summer of Tanzania is like the winter of Michigan and everything just seems unbearable or what the deal is. Don’t pity me. Things really are fine I’m just terribly homesick, tried of eating terrible food and ready to DO something. Yes, that’s right, I may have traveled half way around the world to do “amazing things”, but let’s be real, the only job that I am dong here is serving as an American Ambassador for a small village in Tanzania. It’s totally what I had expected , but hoped in the deepest parts of my heart would not be true. So, I sound terribly cynical and I’m going to drop that gray colored hat right now!

Okay, good news. The thief has been caught. In a series of stressful, unfortunate and totally stupid events he broke into my house and stole my camera. In distress I locked myself into my house and read “Son of a Witch” for and entire day trying to calm myself down. It’s a terribly violating feeling when the people that you are trying to work with steal from you. I mean seriously, screw that. So after a day of seething and reading I went to Mama Witi’s house in the evening and told her about what had happened. Because my walls HAVE BEEN MADE HIGHER! (but without cement so they are just going to fall down, hahahahaha) they thief broke into the window attached to my Bafu (bathing room) on the back of my house, which then leads into my courtyard and then my house. Yeah, somehow they got into my house and stole my camera and that is that. While I was telling here we were sitting around a fire cooking ugali for dinner and her son Olie, who I had helped a few months back when he was sick, told me that he say a student with a video taking camera at school today. Well, it doesn’t take a genius to figure out that that had to be my camera because nobody in the village can really afford my camera or has the means to attain one even if they could. So, Mama Witi and her hubby Baba Eliza did a night raid and went to the kid’s house to get my camera. In the process they got a full confession from him. Apparently he has been stealing everything from me, breaking into my courtyard and just plain old trying to scare the crap out of me. Cool. Not.
That night around midnight they came back to my house to return my camera and give me the full details on the kids confession. The next day I had to got to his “case” and sit in a tiny room with a bunch of old me and his parents, my village government and Mama Witi while the fired questions at him. It was terrible. I felt bad and sad for him and myself at the same time. It was super strange. Then we pulled out my camera and he had taken pictures of himself so they were the damning evidence. In the end I think he got beat even though I was insistent that they show him mercy. After that I think they just sent him home and now it’s just all supposed to be fine. I would have rather talked to him personally, avoided the beating, and gotten to the heart of the matter then what happened, but in the eyes of the villagers, its all fine because I got my stuff back (which is a big relief), but it’s still scary…like who breaks in a says my name under my bedroom window in the middle of the night? This kid apparently. I don’t know. How am I supposed to feel about this??

Other updates, this week was cold and blah, hence my mood. I was charged by a bull not once but twice, walked a crap load, helped SPW do their festival and made lots of posters and just some random running around, I spent some QT with Witi and made a million fried bread rolls with her yesterday morning, which was a great way to spend a lazy Sunday morning! I beat the crap out of a bunch of corn, polished off some books, got stuff ready for the seminar on Thursday (which may have to be postponed due to my friends illness…), I made friends with the rats that won’t die and have named then Steward and Edward, however I pray that they do not make babies, I’ve struggled a lot, but that’s life man. We can’t always expect it to be easy….right?
Anyway, missing everyone tons and I can’t wait to come home for Christmas….! (God that sounds SO far!) Hahaha, okay life IS good and I miss the life I knew. It’s selfish and true. Damn.


oxdearjamiexo said...

Hey Mags,

Keep your head up. You are a very strong person. Things will always get better. And you of all people I feel can always find the light in the dark. We miss you here at CMU!


Jamie and Caitlin.

mom said...

Must be in the air. Kate was in a foul mood yesterday too.Good news..there is always tomorrow. If you see my Kate, please give her a hug from her Mom. Be safe and you do make a difference. Carol

Patty said...

I feel the same way every winter in Michigan - dreary day after day, cold, blah, it has to affect your mood. Glad you got your camera back, I love your pics! Hang in there kiddo, Love and peace, Pat

Devon said...

Well my dear Margaret in two years you are going to say,"when I was in Tanzania..." it will go by sooo fast. I know right now its seems like forever away that you are coming home. I want to say's ok to say you are homesick, and that you are having a hard time, it doesn't change how proud we all are of you, and it doesn't make us think of you any different. You are human and you grew up with a loving family and wonderful friends with whom you know now you can't live without. When you come home you will be grateful for the little things and we will all be grateful to call you a friend who changed the the lives of someone in Tanzania!
Can't wait to see you, snow will be flying here before we know it!!

Sara said...

hi maggie, im a pcv in azerbaijan and came across your blog. just wanted to let you know i can totally relate to your feelings regarding lack of work and frustrations among different cultures. you arent alone and just being there with the relationships you have everyday is making a difference. remember, change and progress take a long time. keep at it, youre doing an amazing thing!

Faye said...

There are 3 things promised to us in this life: Death, taxes and struggle. If we had no struggle, we could not be quality human beings, we could not create value.

I hope I can see you when you come home for x-mas. Even when you would come home from school we never really got to see each other. But I have a hug here waiting for you!!



Mema said...

Oh my dear girl - I wish I could make all those sad and bad feelings go away; but hence that is another part of life that makes us stronger. We miss you as much as you miss us and can't hardly wait until you are here for Christmas (but don't want to wish our summer away either). I am sorry about the thief and the impact that it has had on you. Please stay strong, stay safe, and stay you. Love, Hugs and Kisses

Andrea said...

I love you, Mags! Wish we could go grab a beer at The Bird or something. We'll do so when you get back. Stay strong. Miss you girl!