Once at the bus stop a taxi driver took one look at us and asked if we were going to the mission hospital, Im assuming that this is the only reason for tourists being in this very rural area as opposed to us looking so dreadful from the journey that he assumed we were in need of urgent medical attention!! He then helped us phone the medical officer who we had been told to contact and arranged with the hospital to take us there and they would pay on arrival. Bit scary going in his taxi because as most the conversation with the medical officer was conducted by the taxi driver in swahili, we were having to trust him that this was what had been arranged and get into his very much unlicensed taxi... Whilist we were aware that this isn't usually the best idea we didn't have much choice as the hospital was 14km away and there were no licensed taxis about here in the middle of nowhere! Fortuanately he was actually honest and we arrived safely at the hospital to a very warm welcome from 2 of the doctors who took us to our guesthouse and arranged us some very welcome food free of charge which we were not expecting at all but were very grateful for as we had only had biscuits all day. We were told that we would be cooked for all weekend to give us a chance to settle in and find the market/shop which was another pleasant surprise. Feel a bit guilty though accepting free food from a poor african hospital but hopefully the cost is already accounted for in our accomadation costs.
Dinner was a common dish in tanzania: chip omelate. Amazing! Why have I never thought to make this in England! However it was incredibly filling and I really struggled to eat the whole thing but felt I had to because I kept thinking of that standard parent phrase "There are children in Africa who are starving" and this time the conscience easing thought that I can't send it to them was much less relevant!
Our accomadation is very nice but water here is scarce so whilst tnere are taps and a shower none of them work as it is currently the drier months of the year. So in the bathroom is a large bucket full of of water and a jug which we have to use for a things from flushing the loo to taking a shower. When our bucket runs out we can refill from one of several buckets in the kitchen. Im not yet sure what happens when the buckets in the kitchen run out or how long the water is supposed to last for so I really hope we are not using too much :s!
- Our very own Tanzanian shower!
Woken up this morning at 9am for breakfast even though we don't start at the hospital till monday, I guess I'm going to have to get used to mornings again (Im not a morning person!), but as long as I can get more of the delicious coffee we were given this morning I'll cope :). We were given a saucepan full of boiled water to mix with our cold water and use for a shower, but as it was just one saucepan between the two of us, we are learning quickly to be economical with water whilst showering. Whilst Im sure by the end of my elective I will long for a real shower, at the moment I am enjoying learning how to live like a Tanzanian.
Going to try and cram learn some swahili now before I start at the hospital on Monday because I am embarrassed at how little I know and don't want to be completely useless on the wards.