A woman for all times
By Amaya Álvarez.
We got to Tanzania by foot. Kenyan Carmelite Fathers left us at the border we crossed walking to be greeted by Tanzanian parents.
These meters full of street vendors in the free zone were very symbolic because I felt much stranger than when we landed in a place. Besides land borders always have another flavor. More full rating and fewer tourists.
When we started our route to Bunda, our first destination, at first there was almost no difference in the landscape, Tanzania but slowly began to unravel your personality, vast tracts of nature as far as the eye you with just a few adobe houses near the road. Mountains, but also extensive plains, do not see it but we are very close to Lake Victoria. I do not separate the face of the window, in Kenya in many sections of the road we saw zebras and other animals, but I’m not lucky, at least I thought so, Bunda happens to be on the edge of the Serengeti park, what guaranteed us to see baboons, buffaloes and the most beautiful sunsets in the world.
Mothers waiting for us we dealt with all the delicacy of the world and every afternoon at the hour of rest could go to the parlor and talk to the nuns of the Way, people who have known, which meet in places that are coming, It became a very familiar at which Father Jerome, I was completely in his element. And I felt like a very African experience. Jerome told true stories but with the tone of fable, gesticulating much and with her white perennial smile.
Although I have to say that both the Father Marlon picked and coordinated our entire trip, as many nuns and monks we met were Indians. Tanzania is a mission with a strong presence India, but as they themselves tell us about the missionary work, it is integrated, know a place and participate in it, whereupon, after many years and are also Tanzanians.
That western part of Tanzania is very natural, very nice, the people are friendly and trusting, everyone talks to you, even without a common language gesture seeking ways to make yourself understood. My feeling was that there is no suspicion of the other. From toddlers, even their grandmothers. And speaking of grandmothers.
She was walking alone from the monastery into a church, the others had passed me in the car but I had some things to do. And along the way in a very poor neighborhood, many people watching me. Not being a tourist spot anything I guess they were surprised, after a few minutes I was walking at the same pace as a family of several women, a grandmother, a woman with two daughters with their children, a child who cradled her brother and two baby girls walking hasty to keep in pace with their little legs. No one spoke English. Nothing. But then they took me as part of the group. I said in every language I know who went to church. Do not ask me why, but it worked the Portuguese Egreja. Or maybe the sum of the above. Enchanted told me that was on track. A few minutes later one of the girls was in my arms and the other grabbed my hand. I pointed gestures fabric with which they dress, but did not understand me, not a thing, We kept trying between laughs for a while. I wanted to know where I could buy a cloth like that. And they made me gestures, they touched me, pinched me… I didn’t know what it was all about. At the end, arrived at the church and grandmother went to a young man who was there and who was finally able to translate. She wanted to go with her to her home, wanted to give a fabric, Women had no shoes. I could not accompany, began the ceremony, but that shared minutes, those gestures, this act of generosity that you know will stay with you. I know that memory, the long half hour walk will be unforgettable.
However, as I always leave the topic. I think I'll have to write a second blog about Tanzania, because there are many things I want to say that I was not able to.