Friday, October 19, 2012

October 19, 2012 - FAQs

I will not sugar coat the truth that I am having a difficult reintroduction to my normal life after being home last week and Kyle's death. It is wonderful to be with my husband and children again; less wonderful to be away from my siblings and parents and cousins and aunts and friends.  But I thought I would blog about something else in an effort to distract myself (and, perhaps, you).  

When I was home people asked me a lot about living in Tanzania and there were some common questions that I thought I would share here, in case you are also wondering the same.  I think some of these I have addressed in other blogs, but maybe in too verbose a manner.  As Mrs. Walker taught me back in elementary school, I'll try to K.I.S.S.  [K.I.S.S. = Keep It Simple, Sweetie]

FAQs about Life in Dar

1.  Is it really THAT hot?
Yes.  Hot and humid. From now until May. July and August were beautiful months of perfect, non-extreme summer weather...also known as "winter".

2. Do you sleep under mosquito nets?
Yes.  All of us.  Always.  Malarial mosquitos bite from 10 pm to 4 am, so as long as they are not inside your net you are not very likely to get malaria.  Of course there are exceptions.

3. Do you like it better than Nairobi?
Please remember that, although we were ready to leave Nairobi, we mostly liked living there.  And we do also like it here.  Security is marginally better.  Health care is marginally worse.  Weather is "worse" here. Access to the beach is better.  Kids going to a Danish school is amazing.

4. How's it going with Rose?
I don't blog about Rose too much anymore because I think she might occasionally read the blog [if you're reading this...HI ROSE!] and I don't want her to feel exploited.  But it is going very well.  We are so grateful that she moved with us.  She is good at her job (both housekeeping and nannying) and really loves our kids, and it is NEVER a bad thing to have more people in your kids' lives who love them!

5. What is Charles doing now?
We hear from him occasionally (most often through Rose).  The goats my parents bought him have multiplied and are doing well.  His wife is teaching with the degree we helped her get.  Charles has a job that we helped him get working for a Dutch guy's business and family.  

6. Does Grace speak more English or Danish?
She still speaks more English at home, but is definitely bilingual. She does not speak English when she is at school or with her friends from school. She can switch either language on or off with ease, and I've noticed she is speaking more Danish to Noah lately.  She knows a bit more Swahili now as well and because of other children and teachers at school she understands (and speaks a little) some Norwegian and Swedish.  Actually she is really good at song lyrics in all of those languages.  It's awesome.

7.  When are you moving back home? [and, one might add, what home are you moving back to?]  We don't know when or where, just yet.  If we had to give our ideal plan it would be to be in Dar for another year.  Then to "do" Kristoffer's third year on this contract with the World Bank in Washington, DC (which is probably a long shot, but I said this was our ideal!) and then get another contract to stay there for awhile longer. We would love to buy our own house in the DC area.

Hope that cleared up some of your questions.  Are there any others?!

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