Saturday October 18
Pastor Mwene and his wife Motoki came to the hostel to get us this morning.
We went to their home via cab. Everything is an experience. You have to imagine five of us stuffed into a small Honda type car, careening down the highway full throttle, horn blaring at the intersections. There are no stop signs so the one that does not slow or hesitate is the one to go through first. Dodging pedestrians and potholes.
The scary Cab ride
We turned off of the highway onto a narrow road full of people, goats, chickens and small shops. (Dukas). In about three blocks we pulled up to a blue steel gate. Painted on it was, "Free Methodist Church of Tanzania."
The Blue Gate
Stepping through a smaller gate, we entered a compound. Immediately to the left as we entered was a small building. I was to learn later that was the Church Office. Built right up to that was a metal roof lean to. Pastor Mwene ushered us beyond it to to the back of the courtyard where there was a stark cement building. Upon entering this building I saw a long corridor with doors on either side. We went into the first room. This room was furnished with two sofas and a chair, a Singer treadle machine, a coffee table and TV. We sat in this room and visited for quite a while. People kept coming in and greeting us. It was a steady flow in and out of the room.
Soon one of the girls brought in a tray with four bottles of soda on it. Another brought a small plate of cookies. Before we were served another came in with a dishpan of water, soap, a bucket and a small plastic cup. She proceeded to wash my hands. She had me hold them out over the dishpan while she scooped a cupful of water from the bucket and poured it over my hands. She then handed me a black bar of soap. After I lathered, she again poured water over them to rinse them for me. She did this for everyone in the room. This one simple gesture was so humbling for me. Only after we had washed, did they serve the sodas and cookies.
After the refreshments, we went out to the courtyard. The women who were not cooking were sitting in the shade and many children were playing about. They were very shy of this big white (mzungu) woman. I was soon able to coax them over with my camera. I would take a picture of them and then show it to them. It absolutely delighted them. We played this way until my battery ran down.
This little granddaughter lost her eye because of infection. Probably could have saved it with Neosporin.
Shortly, we were called back inside for lunch. We were served rice, spinach, (mchicha) and a meat in a sauce that I think was tomato. I did not eat the meat. Again the washing of our hands. Four of us ate!!! A house full of children and four of us ate. Even Motoki did not join us.
All of these children are grandchildren of Pastor Mwene and Motoki