Thursday, August 26, 2010

Going to the market and being in a band :)

So yesterday I experienced local life. First I had a Swahili lesson and learned correct pronunciation and spelling, which was quite easy since it's more or less phonetic. Then we went to the local market to practice the names of vegetables/fruits and how to say "which price?" from the day before. Walking into the market, our driver Saa Nane came with us and found a street kid to help us carry stuff. I refused and carried some stuff. it's not like I'm incapable and there's no reason he should carry five bags, when I have two perfectly good hands. Anyway, walking into the market, everyone started showing us what they had, and the buying  commenced. However, while it was significantly larger than Chile, the people were much less obstinate and cogent in showing they were the buyer you wanted. A handy saying,"Tuna chapata (we already bought (that))" definitely was useful. And then they would leave you alone unlike South America. While there were some "oh my god so beautiful" comments, the intensity of catcalls and the quantity was also significantly less. I wonder if this is because we were with Saa Nane or if the people are just more genuine here. They seem so. I must admit I was quite proud of myself. I remembered the majority of the vegetables/fruits, and asked how much everything cost and how much I wanted (in Swahili) on the third day of being here. I loved it so much. Our Swahili teacher told us we went to the "expensive" market, and by expensive, I mean every vegetable you can think of for under twenty dollars! He says the other market is practically free so maybe we'll go there with him next time, but we have a whole fridge to eat first.

Last night, we went out for dinner with plans of discussing work (a meeting over dinner). But then we ran into people Liza knew and ate with them. One of them owns a lot of the restaurants in town and got my number for gigs :) He told us there was a jam session at a club called Colobus and it was his birthday tomorrow along with the Thai restaurant head so we all agreed to go. Liza and Nina ended up staying home, but I'm so glad I went! It began with a Tanzanian band that an ex-pat from the States had joined that would more or less be described as a reggae band. And then they announced whichever musicians would like to come to the stage. Stiggy, the gui who owns all the restaurants, brought a piano for me and another American, some Tanzanians and me jammed for a good long while. It started with a simple chord progression and led to some pretty cool solos, some guys started singing, and was just all around awesome! Afterwards, the band came back and I went to tell Stiggy I was leaving (he went to eat dinner with Deng, the Thai restaurant head), which involved walking through the band to get to the restaurant part. As i was passing through, the guitar player asked me if I'd play piano with him. "Just lay down some chords.." so I did. I ended up staying another good hr playing with the band! It was awesome!!!

So yep that's day 3 in a nutshell. Better go get dressed before our 10 am Swahili lesson :)


  1. Sounds like too much fun!

  2. Ah boy. That jam sesh sounded like a dream. Beautiful music, bringing it all together...