Monday, 29 October 2012

The hall

Sunday October 29th

Back at the beginning of October, after a quiet day, I gave you a guided tour of the YMCA.  It's been another quiet day today and another chance to see what is happening here.

I mentioned last Monday that I returned to a centre over-run with muzungus but I didn’t add that we were also being visited by a gang of workmen from Moshi, about 225 miles north west of Tanga on the edge of the Kilimanjaro National Park.  Moshi is the headquarters for the YMCA in Tanzania but I think the main reason Mama Gladness has brought in workers from such a distance is that they live on site and she can keep an eye on them.  To save you referring back to my earlier blog, here is a picture of the Hall that is on site here and this is where they are doing their work.

At either side of the hall are toilets and a couple of conference/class rooms and the first job they have done is to complete the rendering on the walls and floors for these new rooms.

The team will then go on to completely render the walls of the hall inside and out, but in the meantime a pickup truck arrived Tuesday with lengths of square section tubing on the back, and the resident welder has been busy creating the windows…

…which, as you can see, are quite impressive when in place. 

Mama Gladness’ plan must work, because whilst the Eid celebrations continued all around them over the last three days, the workmen have carried on their seven day working week.  Certainly in the temperature we had yesterday, I didn’t envy them their job and all this without the offer of fish and rice or beef and rice.  They seem to survive on a combination of ‘ugali’ and either vegetable stew or beans.  Ugali is a mixture of maize flour and water cooked to a dough like consistency.  The method of eating ugali is to roll a lump into a ball with the right hand, and then dip it into a sauce or stew of vegetables. Making a depression with the thumb allows the ugali to be used to scoop, and to wrap around the vegetables or beans.  I’ve not tried it yet but I suppose the time must come.

Anyway they are all working hard and as well as the floors, walls and windows, the electrician is using his top of the range retractable ladder to chisel out for the conduit that will hold the electric cable. The health and safety officer must have been stuck in traffic.

The idea is for big concertinaed doors to fill the main entrances on both sides and the front, so when finished it should really look impressive.  I will keep you informed.


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