Thursday, August 21, 2008

I'm getting cranky

I can feel it. I'm fighting it..but my temper is short these days....

Bagamoyo has been interesting so far, but frustrating. Perhaps its my mood. I feel like I got off on the wrong foot with them and it hasn't right-footed itself yet. We've been in "the field" for a couple of days, talking to mothers who enrolled their kids in the malaria vaccine trial. Again - wish I spoke the language. As it is I feel like I'm not getting much, at least in the way of real insight into these people's lives. Peasant farmers are not particularly forthcoming to strangers -- particularly in translation.

The town features some German graves, a few old Zanzibar-style doors, and one Rastaman...Rasta Zion. He gave me a tour yesterday before I could say no. I ended up kind of liking him...he would give me the spiel on whatever it was we were looking at and then stop. Then after a pause of about five seconds he'd remember he was a Rasta and add a "yeah Mon".....must be tough being the only one of the tribe around! He wasn't happy with the $2 I offered so I upped it to $5. He was whistling as he headed to the beer store.

The hotel is a sort of African conference hotel. At the moment it is occupied by a Tanzanian women's NGO conference. These ladies are a sight to behold..beautiful, each wrapped up like a brightly colored confection in her own traditional garb. Think sari, but with no skin exposed. Add wigs for some, turbans for others and you've got a fashion hit parade. These women can EAT! They are not small to begin with, and the way they load their plates at the breakfast buffet would put any American to shame. Then
they sail around in slow, stately gangs..checking each other out and trading notes.

I thought I scored a jackpot today when I bought "24" -- the entire 3rd season on one disc -- for $5. Get home and load it up and damn thing is in French and French only...Jacques Bauer. Je m'en fou