Crater

Ngorongoro Crater A few gazillion years ago a volcano blew its top off. Given the size of the crater today, 11 miles across and 2,000' deep, the mountain was taller than Mount Kilimanjaro, the world's tallest free standing mountain and just a few miles away in Northern Tanzania. It is the most intact caldera in … Continue reading Crater

Winning Smile

AIDs and malaria are the primary cause of Tanzanian orphans. Orphaned children are typically taken in by other family members; the orphanage is a last resort. The orphanage keeps hair short for maintenance and hygienic reasons so the only way to tell girls from boys is the skirts they wear. Visitations from mission groups are … Continue reading Winning Smile

Ephraim D. Muro

I met Ephraim D. Muro in early 2016 during a mission trip to Moshi, Tanzania.  Standing in line for a pot luck dinner at his church, he insisted that I go first, which then became a point of respectful disagreement.  Knowing how age was so respected in their culture, I was somewhat offended that he … Continue reading Ephraim D. Muro

Happiness

Webster's definition of happiness is: 1: good fortune: prosperity  2: a: a state of well-being and contentment: joy b: pleasurable satisfaction. The first definition, "good fortune: prosperity" contradicts everything I was taught as a child; i.e. money doesn't bring happiness.  The second definition more aptly matches my value system; i.e. contentment and well-being come from … Continue reading Happiness

Learning to Count

A bright young girl in Uduru Lutheran Parish's preschool shows the teacher she can count to 100.  Located near Moshi, Tanzania, this typical preschool relies on the church, volunteers and donations to prepare their youngsters for primary school. The four year old students were so quiet and patient, I marveled at the teacher's control of the … Continue reading Learning to Count

School’s Out

On a morning walk near Moshi, Tanzania I could hear young children's excited voices.  Several kids were running toward me from both directions, all with big smiles on their faces.  Soon, I was surrounded by a dozen boisterous youngsters, all dressed in the same school jersey, all with such uninhibited joy -- like school was … Continue reading School’s Out

Hay Market

Many forms of transportation are used in Tanzania, everything from donkey carts to large trucks.  Walking is probably the most common, followed by cheaply made Chinese motorcycles. Bicycles are very popular too.  On a major highway leading out of Moshi, a large city of 185,000, I noticed many men moving hay with their bicycles.  Whatever … Continue reading Hay Market

Giving Thanks

This 4-5 year old is proudly wearing the uniform of the Uduru Parish preschool; hat and jersey/sweater using colors of the Tanzanian  flag, with a patch of the flag shown on the hat.  The jersey is several sizes too big for him, probably a hand-me-down from an older sibling, but in very good condition. By … Continue reading Giving Thanks

Agape Jr. Seminary

Agape Lutheran Junior Seminary is located on the eastern slopes of Mount Kilimanjaro in northern Tanzania, just over the hill from Kenya.  It is a private school, known for its high academic standards. The school is well maintained, neat and clean, with relatively modern dormitories.   The school's director is a no-nonsense person who expects, … Continue reading Agape Jr. Seminary

Serengeti Stand Off

I was in Serengeti National Park in northern Tanzania, perched on top of a high bank watching a hippo pool below.  The small river flowed toward me straight out of the northern horizon, made a left turn at my feet and headed east.  Several hippo families were lazing in the river's elbow. The 6,000 lb hippo came … Continue reading Serengeti Stand Off

Chaga House

The Chaga people are the third largest ethnic group in Tanzania.  They are found in the northeast part of Tanzania, on the slopes of Mount Kilimanjaro, near the town of Moshi. Look closely, Mount Kilimanjaro is peaking above the clouds in this photo. In Chaga tradition, their houses are round, built without any corners.  Families are … Continue reading Chaga House

Repurposed Tires

The Maasai are a semi-nomadic tribe that move their livestock within ever-shrinking grazing rights of Northern Tanzania and Kenya. Descendants of a fierce warrior nation, today's Maasai are peaceful and friendly except when it comes to their cattle. They are easily recognized by their brightly-colored one-piece garments known as kanga, red being a favored color, but blue is also … Continue reading Repurposed Tires

Affordable Transportation

Bicycles are a common mode of transportation in Tanzania.   Motorcycles and cars are common in big cities, but are impractical and too expensive in the rural areas. I found this bike parked behind one of the buildings at the Hai Vocational School.  I suspect it was owned by one of the instructors, as the … Continue reading Affordable Transportation

Directional Sign

I love signs.  I especially like signs that have double meanings in their text or in their surroundings. This sign, painted on the side of a building, was directing people to the front door of the reception office.  Nothing special about it.  But, with the man walking in front of the sign, the sign came … Continue reading Directional Sign

Yawning Hippo

Happy hippos?  This might give you a different impression of the chubby cuties depicted in cartoons and children's literature.  I took this shot at the Tanzanian hippo pool shown here in an earlier blog.  It's a close-up of the hippo in the center-lower-right part of the pool. Hippos lay around in the water all day to … Continue reading Yawning Hippo

Uduru Schools

The schools I saw in Tanzania were hard to take.  The Uduru Lutheran Parish schools have many students eager to learn, but have limited supplies and resources. Students wear uniforms, sharp-looking sweaters using colors of the Tanzanian flag: black, green, blue and yellow.  Uniforms are required, but many families can hardly afford the tuition.  As shown above, … Continue reading Uduru Schools

No Shoes Inside

I found these tiny Crocs lined up neatly outside the door of a well-kept modern looking house at the Neema Orphanage on the road near Moshi, Tanzania. They belonged to the 4-5 year old group shown at left, a real bunch of live-wires.  The facilities were very nice, and the kids looked well-cared for, but … Continue reading No Shoes Inside

African Weaver

There are several varieties of beautiful birds in Tanzania, but the African Weaver was the easiest to photograph.  I found this guy in a tree next to the road as we descended into the Ngorongoro Crater. With the top of the safari truck popped up, I was almost at eye level with it. Technically, this is … Continue reading African Weaver