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

Vitu vichache


Hanging out at the market on Sunday afternoon, a few friends there are in hysterics over my description of what I imagine my cats are saying to me at various points in the day. Half of the humor is my bizarre personification of these animals that most Tanzanians are afraid of, half is probably my Swahili mistakes.

Three children on the simplest of see-saws: a piece of wood and a ledge in the ground, up and down. “My turn!” says the fourth, watching.

I’m getting sawdust for the cats’ litter. The big pile I usually get it from is damp in some places and on fire in others, but I start to scoop from it anyway. “Don’t use that,” says a carpenter working nearby, “it’s on fire!” He takes me into his workshop and, after asking what size sawdust I want, fills my bag for me.

“I’m going to town tomorrow,” my friend at the market says. “What should I bring back for you?” I think for a moment. “A cucumber,” I tell her. Two days later, at tea-time I’m lying in bed with a plate heaped with thin slices of cucumber, a mug of Earl Grey tea, and the Gabriel Garcia Marquez novella that came out a few years ago, listening to the cats chase each other around the house.

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