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Brenda’s Travel Diary

Saturday, 17 Sep 2011

Location: Kahama, Tanzania

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Saturday, Sept 17th, 2011


Today, we were invited by Jackie to attend the celebrations taking place in the soccer stadium. This week-long festival is celebrating 50 years of independence for Tanzania. Prior to independence, Tanganyika and Zanzibar were two separate countries. When they joined together in 1961, they became Tanzania.

The soccer field is a very large hard-packed dirt area surrounded by a fence. Inside, were booths set up along the fences representing everything from the prison system, health care, education, immigration, political parties, Barrick Gold Mine, an NGO, telephone companies, etc. There were also food and beverage areas and then a stage and dancing areas in the middle. As we went from booth to booth, we were followed by a crowd of mostly children who probably thought we were more of an attraction than the displays.
I remember thinking that this is the same weekend as the Rock Creek Fall Fair and here I am at an “African Fair”

We met up with the District Executive Director (DED) Eliza Bwana, (formerly Therisia) had drinks with the new Chairperson, Alfred Nkwabi (formally Paul Magazi) and another former chair Andrew Masangu. I was very excited to also see Major Matala and also met some of his family!! We enjoyed watching the traditional singing and dancing and even enjoyed some local “Fair Food.”

We were surprised when we ran into another “mzungu” who is here on a two month internship with an organization called Master Peace. Her name is Berit and she’s already been here for two weeks. Kahama is a lonely place to be when you’re the only “mzungu” in town so she was VERY happy to see us. We visited the booth of her host’s and then she joined us for dinner later that evening. We’re happy for Rob who will have someone to spend time with after the rest of us leave. Berit is also from Germany and her and Rob are almost the same age!