The start of year seven in Tanzania!!

Hello to ALL of You!

Remember if you feel you have heard enough about life in Mufindi, Tanzania the delete button is very close!

Anne and I are here for the seventh time and we remind ourselves that we are committed until we turn 70!(unfortunately that time grows closer and closer) As usual the luggage was overflowing and Lauren and Don ripped open our bags and loaded some of my heavy stuff(21 pairs of scissors etc.)into Anne's bags which were much more wisely packed. Her lighter weighing clothes were scattered throughout my bags before fascinated passengers waiting to board Air Canada. Anne hardly even grimaced. She is such a good friend even when the inquiry was made about why so many blades are attached to scissors could possibly be needed on a Tanzanian holiday!! We flew into Dar es Salaam last night. It is aways such a contrast from the modern high tech city of Amsterdam when we fly onto the the dimly lit runway of Dar. Electricity is precious and even in this city of 21/2 million people night time is that of darkest Africa. The airport was quiet and the exchange rate has sunk even a little bit lower for the Tanzanian shilling. When we first began coming 10,000 shillings was worth close to $10.00 now the same amount is closer to $5.00. The ride to the hotel was quick as there were none of the customary traffic jams typical during the day. However people still flow by stuffed in packed dala-dalas and carts with huge loads pulled by thin straining young men intermingle with speeding safari vehicles. It is hot and humid but we're veterans now and we changed on the plane so it didn't feel like we were walking around inside our ovens.

A pause now for a major announcement!!
Just before we left Katie, Anne's daughter called to tell us that the November issue of the "Canadian Living" magazine was available in Vancouver. A quick run into Sidney proved that things take a little longer to arrive on Vancouver Island so we did a mad search at the Vancouver airport. And...yes we found it, on page 19 there is an article written by yours truly. The article covers my Mom, peanut butter cookies, Upendo Sanga and The African Children's Book Box Society. You all need to rush out and buy the magazine so they might print a follow up article due to popular demand!! We are hoping to reach a wider audience and alert more kind Canadians to the plight of living amidst "stone age" poverty. Phyllis, our loyal book keeper and has learned all about donating on line and that major feat can be accomplished by reaching our website as the "Canadian Living" personnel advised us many Canadians would be interested. We fervently hope so!! www.africanbookbox.org

Monday we meet the Charges d'affaires, John Moore at the Canadian High Commission. Currently we have no Canadian High Commissioner in Tanzania. We don't know why. Anne and I are hoping to alert officials to the plight of people in Mufindi and to the overwhelming generosity of their fellow Canadians helping out in this remote area. Anne and I are truly looking forward to this meeting, an exchange of information and knowledge hopefully leading to an indication of support.
We will keep you posted and we will understand(sort of) if you feel called upon to exercise the dreaded delete. (sigh)

With warm feelings,
Ruth and Anne