Sunday, May 26, 2013

Cultivating gratefulness

Picture this:

A white, blonde female riding her bike on a small dirt road. It has just been raining, the air is cooler and lacks the normal stickiness. In them evening light the banana trees and the growing harvests are vividly green against the muddy ground. She greets those she meets on the road and they greet her back as well. They do not know one another, but they greet one another as friends just the same -as is custom. She arrives at her destination, church. She meets two amazing women. They sing hymns and pray with one another. She leaves and as she bikes home she is overwhelmed with gratitude for where she is, her experiences and the relationships she has in such a beautiful place. Then two of her friends jokingly try to knock her off her bike and laughing they all wish each other to have nice evenings:)

Yes! You may have guessed it, this is a true story and one I thought I would share to update you with my feelings lately. Many people ask me how I'm doing and how I am enjoying myself here in Tanzania. Well, here it is. I am so grateful. I love it. I'm enjoying life here as I hope you are in your own home :) 

Before I continue, let me say a couple of things. Turns out (as you may have  guessed) I am not good at blogging regularly. I wish I were better at it but apparently I'm not. Sorry for that- but it is what it is. It takes time and effort to write a blog and a lot of times I don't feel like I have a lot to say as life here is becoming well  normal to me. So if anyone takes time to read thus,  welcome to a new chapter in the blog.

Since I last wrote: (has it really been three months??)

I have battled some nasty sicknesses, which has not been so fun. Even thigh I felt awful, i apparently didn't look it because when I went to be tested for various things at the local clinic ( which I will not do again), the man drawing my blood told me I will marry him... No, not a question... I only wish I was still throwing up at that moment... but I just gave him my blood and left. you'll be happy to know that I am feeling happy and healthy now and for that I am very thankful.

My baba came to visit! :-) it was so wonderful having my dad here and getting to show him off and show him as much as possible in a few weeks. I really enjoyed his time here and it was really hard to see him go again.  But my mom is very happy he is home- even more so that he's been doing lots of chores while she is at work (way to go dad! :) he is enjoying retirement.

Luckily, as I mentioned briefly in my last blog post I have amazing students and it makes my job so enjoyable. Really I feel blessed and fortunate for my experience is here and am really enjoying teaching ( minus not always the English grammar part... Which it times is just a frustrating language! - but don't tell my students I said that!) I also think I am losing some of my vocabulary which I do not like so much- I am reading lots, which I love, and so it is not so much recognizing the words, but more so using them! It's sad.. And there have been many occasions I cannot think of the English word for something in Swahilli... Oh well it always comes eventually  ( to peel... How can you forget that!)

It has been 20 months now since I have been here. Although to some, that may be a big statement, I feel pretty much impartial to it. What is 20 month anyway? Time goes by so fast lately and the more I think about it, the more I am trying hard to measure my time here in moments rather than hours, days, weeks, months... etc. It is a pretty challenging thing since I am at heart American and lived for 24 years in a busy fast-paced society where efficiency, accomplishments, and careers trump most. To go from that busy place to Tanzania, where people are not living by jam-packed busy schedules, but rather from event to event ( as life brings them of course) not worrying or looking at the clock to rush off to the next thing or as I love about it a place where others take priority and taking time for others is a key part of the daily agenda. Something I can only hope to take home with me to the land of the quicker the better.

Perhaps this happiness stems from the feeling that my time here is so limited. Only until Christmas? Oy! That seems like tomorrow. Well, I am determined to enjoy it. The students here however have been scheming for ways for me to stay. Along with the board of the school, we had a meeting in which their solution to me leaving was for me not to leave... Um okay that's not really a solution, but it is nice that people want me to stay!

okay, I guess that is all I will try to be better especially over break, but I cannot make promises of course ;). If you are ever wondering how I am doing, wanting me to blog or worried for my lack of writing a blog or anything feel free to email me! (

Thank you all for your continued support and prayers without you this with I'll be a lot more difficult. I'll leave you with these words from Emerson:

"Cultivate the habit of being grateful for every good thing that comes to you and give thanks continuously. And because of all things that have contributed to your advancement, you should include all things in your gratitude." Ralph Waldo Emerson

Much love, Mungu akubariki,

Annie Bunio

1 comment:

  1. Yayyyy blog post! I love this...what I wouldn't give to be able to go somewhere and live life event-to-event for awhile, just to breathe a little and not try to make life so busy. It's amazing how we here in America assume that the way we live is the only way - how could you not be busy and stressed out 24/7?! =] Your blog posts are wonderful, my dear, and I love hearing about how your life is going on the other side of the world. I miss you (but at least we have turd and fart emoticons to keep us company...=])