Kiswahili Language Classes

By Eve and Ellie B


We just spent our first week here in Tanzania taking Kiswahili classes at a language school at a Lutheran seminary in Morogoro. We also went on a beautiful hike up a mountain to get ourselves acclimated with the town. During our stay at the seminary, we lived with homestay families that live on the campus. Some of us were alone, while others stayed in doubles. Each morning, we would wake up and eat with our families, and then head off to class. Luckily, we had two chai (tea!) breaks to help alleviate our Swahili stress. We ate lunch together as a Carpe family before heading back to class. Afternoons and dinners were spent at the homestays, where we played cards, watched Tanzanian television, and danced in the living room. For many of us, we had to learn how to take bucket showers (some needed help shampooing) and said a prayer as we attempted to flush toilets without running water. For our last night, we decided to host all of our homestay families to an “American” meal with an Egyptian desert. We settled on a taco bar and rice pudding. However, we were unaware that “tako” means “butt” in Swahili; there was much confusion, and then a lot of laughter. A delicious evening!

The next morning, we said a sad goodbye and headed off to Iringa. Our 4-hour, 10 am bus, ended up leaving at 12:30 and arriving at 7 pm, after breaking down multiple times along the mountains. The long drive was enhanced, though, when we drove through a national park and saw giraffes, antelope, zebra, impala, and wildebeest from our windows! Baboons watched us from the side of the road. When we finally arrived in Iringa, we bonded with some Carpe alums at our beautiful hostel. Our rest day in Iringa (today) was filled with markets and some well-deserved relaxation.

Badaaye, friends and family!