Ernest & Esters House
Ernest & Ester are in the middle of building their own home
We left Manyoni and headed towards Kilimatinde some 20klm away, our first stop was Ernest & Esters house, they are building it themselves after being allocated a plot of land. The house is still a shell after 5 years as you need to save up to buy a bag of cement or some bricks as you go, this is the way things are built in Tanzania. Ernest and Ester were very proud of their house and you could see the excitement in their eyes as they explained how it would look when finished.
Our next stop was St John’s Bible School where Ernest had been principal for some years prior to starting his studies at Msalato. We were shown around the grounds of the school and taken to the lookout that gave a magnificent view of the Rift Valley, land that you could imagine elephants and giraffes roaming free, but alas no.
We then met the staff from the attached girl’s secondary school who were busy marking exam papers and we were provided with refreshments of bottled water or soft drinks.
Next stop the local hospital. The hospital has undergone some major renovations thanks to ‘Medical Mission Aid’
who have built new wards, a pre & post natal wing and as the hospital has no electricity and relies on generators, solar panels have been installed. We were shown around the hospital by one of the doctors, there are 3 but the other 2 were away on leave. We were also shown over the nurses training facility and provided with a meal. After the meal we met Esters sister in law who is a teacher at the nursing school, her husband is a Pastor and lives in the community he has been assigned to so he is away for long periods.
Next on the travel itinerary was a visit to Ernest’s mothers house for a quick hello, then Ernest had to call in to visit his uncle, we did not need to get out of the car as it would be a quick visit but when we arrived we were invited in to say hello and to our amazement we were provided with a meal and refreshments, rice, chicken, greens, beans, and ugali (an African dish made from maize, something between porridge and dough) this was our first encounter with ugali although it is part of the staple
Next and last stop was a visit to Esters mother’s house, she had just returned home from the Shamba (farm) where she works, she has to walk 2 hours there and 2 hours back every day. Although the Tanzanian people do not have a lot Ester’s mother still presented us with a large bag of peanuts as a gift and we left her with a bag of sugar and rice. So moving that no matter what they always think of others.
Well, heading back to Msalato we had eaten at the Cathedral, the hospital and at the Uncle’s house so we were somewhat over full but not yet finished as we had been invited out for dinner at a staff house and although we were an hour late the meal was still waiting for us. No wonder we were putting on weight.
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