When we returned to the guesthouse I spotted some young boys in the front yard of a house across the street playing with a flat football (soccer ball). I dropped my stuff inside and of course, all eyes were on me as soon as I approached them. “Na weza kucheza?” I asked (Can I play?). The kids were thrilled. They didn’t speak much English, but we worked out some games through a combination of English, Swahili, and sign language. They were quite impressed with me. The mama came out of the house after a minute and her English was quite good. She spoke to me and asked me questions as she watched us play. When I told her [that] yes, women do play football in America, she laughed out loud in amusement, who knew. We quickly acquired more kids who wanted to play football with the crazy mzungu girl, as well as crowds of spectators that came and went, but the game ended when Mama announced it was bath time.
It’s been a fun week … and I am becoming more and more comfortable in this city. The more I get to know people and places, the more it feels like home, and it helps that my Swahili is really coming along too.
Andi B., Tanzania Sustainable Agriculture Program
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