Inspirational Tid-Bits

Our walk to work: Part 1

In the Inspirational Tid-Bits section, we will change things up a little bit. Both of our parents really enjoyed the walk to and from work while they were here. They loved seeing the sights and seeing where we went every day. Because of this, we decided that we wanted to share our typical walk to work with everyone.

The first half of our walk is through our neighborhood. The roads are dirt and, depending upon the season, they are either muddy from the rains or dusty from the sun. Cars, motorcycles, and daladala’s (vans that serve as busses, pictured below) pass us as we walk along the dirt roads. Below are two pictures of the road that leads out of our neighborhood during the rainy season.

Often times as we wind out of our neighborhood, we come across neighbors walking to and from town. We also regularly see children and they great us with, “Haw are you?” It is always entertaining to see the young children! They are so excited to see mzungu in their neighborhood, even though we have lived here for almost 10 months!

As we leave our neighborhood and approach the field we walk through, we pass a secondary school. This is equivalent to high school in the United States. Usually in the morning the children are in class and in the afternoons they are out of school. This can make for a crowed walk home if we are near the school when classes are dismissed! Below is a photo of the school building.

As we pass the school (also pictured in the next photo), we turn to walk parallel to a large field. The field is actually owned by Moshi Municipal Airport, but planes land so infrequently that the locals have turned the property into a farm filled with walking paths! On clear days, Mt. Kilimanjaro is in view and towers over this part of our walk. It is always a breathtaking site to see the amazing beautiful mountain when it peaks from behind the clouds. Below is a photo of the school and the field side by side. The second photo is of a woman farming in the field as we pass.

Our dirt path through the field leads directly from the school to a paved road. We share the dirt path with motorcycles, women transporting goods on their heads, and men pushing goods in carts. Some days can be quite busy on the path and we must dodge children, motorcycles, and people transporting goods. Other days, the path is very clear and we do not encounter anyone as we walk through the field. The field is open and does not have any trees. As the weather gets warmer, we are finding that this is by far the hottest part of our walk! Below are three pictures of the dirt path through the field.

As we leave the dirt roads and approach the pavement, we still walk by residential housing. Children are still around at all hours of the day. They always call out to us as we pass, “Mzungu! Haw are you?” Below is a picture of one of the children we often meet on our walk.

There are also many chickens that join us on our walk. Most families who have a courtyard raise chickens. During the day, they let the chickens out to eat and the chickens return home in the evenings. We wrote about this in a blog at the beginning of our trip (“Who’s Chicken is That?” blog from “Through Our Eyes” 6/21/11).

On clear days, Mt. Kilimanjaro is still in full view during this part of the walk. Below is a picture of Mt. Kilimanjaro behind a medical dispensary that we walk past on the way to work.

At this point, we are now on pavement and we are approximately halfway done with our walk to work. We will continue with our second half of the walk next week in part 2 of our walk to work!

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