The views expressed herein are mine and not those of the Peace Corps.



Useful Acronyms

PC Peace Corps
ICT Information & Communications Technology
PCT Peace Corps Trainee (pre-swearing-in)
PCV Peace Corps Volunteer (post-swearing-in)
PST Pre-Service Training
CBT Community-Based Training

Archive for February, 2009

Birthday yangu

Jess and Bret came yesterday to celebrate my birthday early. It was a lot of fun: we made pirogues (delicious!) and chocolate cake (which turned out more like brownies because I got distracted and forgot to put in the salt and baking powder) and then watched Hot Fuzz and then somehow it was one in […]


I woke to the screeching of crows fighting on my tin roof; looked out the window to see a cloud sailing through the valley. The day passed uneventfully; I taught my classes (I have four more periods now that the Form Is have split back into four streams instead of two), went to the post […]

Marafiki zangu

If you’ve friended me on Flickr and I’ve friended you back, you should now be able to see a picture of Bret and Jess, my two sitemates. This is as good a time as any to tell you about the Americans I live closest to. Jess is a health volunteer who’s been in country since […]

Maji Machaffu

The water in the tap in my backyard is brown with large black flecks in it, more like very thin mud than like water. As I watch it flow into the bucket, I’m very glad that the only thing this water is destined for is to be used to flush my toilet. Even the seemingly […]

Naomba kimya

The teacher in charge of teaching the chemistry lab sessions is taking advantage of the good weather. The classes are too big to fit in the lab, so they stand in a U shape outside my computer lab, facing the teacher. As he holds up objects, they say the names in unison. Young voices yellng […]

Natembea sana

My lesson for the weekend: if a Tanzanian gives you directions and tells you you won’t get lost, don’t believe her.Friday after I finished teaching my morning class (I only teach in the morning on Fridays) I went home, switched my skirt for a pair of pants, put on sunscreen and a hat and my […]


Because “ndiyo”, the Swahili equivalent of “yes”, is long and literally means something like “it is so”, Swahili speakers tend not to use it that much. Even after I picked up on this I kept using it, out of laziness and because I liked saying it. But I started to feel weird, not because anyone […]

Shida ya viazi

One of the things I was happiest to receive in the bag my parents sent to me was a very nice potato masher, the one we’d been using at home for the past couple years. I felt guilty for depriving them of such a good potato masher but at the same time was very pleased […]


As I walked from my house to the school buildings this morning, my ever-wandering brain began to dwell on my time in State College two summers ago, at an REU. Now it’s hard for me to even remember what I was researching, something about the conductivity of ultra-cooled somethingorother. The research never really grabbed me […]

Nipigie simu!

This post will make Chris Segal very happy. So in America, I pretty much hated my cell phone. Sure, it was useful for coordinating things on the fly–in fact, I’m not sure how I would have done without it, we’d have had to plan things in advance or something–but I’ve never been particularly fond of […]