You get ridiculously excited when your teacher shares the word for "snow" - a word that has alluded me for 2 years in Dar (who needs a word for snow in Tanz, really? Unless of course you're describing the weather patterns in MI...)
You realize you can best describe the scope of your allergies by saying you're allergic to all of the m/wa class of Swahili nouns (living, moving things), plus trees.
You see a little five-yr-old boy riding a bicycle in circles outside on the dirt path after dinner with a headlamp on, and think it's normal.
You realize you can see the Milky Way clearly above your tent, every night... and wish you could photograph the sky for other people to see.
You spend an hour star-gazing with a friend and a nightsky app on your phone...
You remember why Dar isn't the greatest place to live on earth (first mozzie bite, sticky sweatiness, traffic, noise, blah!)
You realize just how much you appreciate quiet times at meals... (as much as I love the 40 people I’m living with at camp every day, some days it’s nice to just eat alone…)
Your old guard in Dar greets you after two months of language school... And asks why all your roommates can speak Swahili and you can't. (Sooo encouraging!!!)
You realize just how quiet the campsite really is.
You look at the clock thinking it's late and must be time for sleep... To realize it's only 8pm. (I've heard rumor that learning a new language makes you need an extra hour of sleep each night, and am beginning to believe it's true...)
You bring a friend dental floss from Dar and they get super-duper excited about it :)
You realize you don't know the ENGLISH word in your English-Swahili dictionary... And aren't sure if it's because it's inappropriate, because it's not often used, or because it's British...
You think you've actually really lost your Swahili noun chart - for real this time - and you have a minor panic attack...
You realize that you can determine your daily level of stress by your level of chocolate consumption at language school...
You look up at the star-studded sky, vibrant balls of fire that God hand-placed according to His creativity and plans, and realize just how inconsequential you are. And how big God is. And that any worries, or concerns, or "not working out the way I expected"s, are silly in comparison, knowing God is totally in control and has good plans to hand-place my future according to His creativity and love.
You realize you only have 2ish weeks left in your hobbit-hole tent at language school, and you actually feel sad.
You wake up at 3am and realize this is the perfect time to try resending the picture to your church they've requested... and spend an hour trying to do the upload...
You see a "Happy Fall" package someone sent your friends with colored leaves drawn on the outside, and you remember that in Michigan... It's fall. Pumpkins. Brisk cool air. Apple cider. Caramel apples. And ... I'm thankful for this. Even if I'm missing it and I'm not there. Enjoy it for me!!!
You pray. And you see God answer. And you wonder why you don't pray more.
You see a girl in long board shorts in a movie and think, "Those shorts aren't appropriate... Her knees are showing!" (Living in Tanz has done something to me...)
Someone asks for prayer for wisdom for: finding a house, new friends for themselves and their kids, a new community in a new city, and a school and church in a new language in a new country. Again. And they sum it up by calling it the norms of life.
The directions say... "Do blah blah blah... But if you're at all unsure about doing it yourself, find a specialized guitar repair shop in your area to perform the installation." Specialized guitar repair shop. Looking... Looking... Hmm. Tanzania. Right. :P
You look at the pillowcases on your bed decorated by kids in the States, and really miss them. A lot.
You find yourself staring at your neighbor's watch more than your teacher or your Swahili notes during class... And realize that Mondays. are Mondays. no matter where you live or what you do...
You find lizard poop on your bed - again - as you lay down to sleep. Then realize afterwards it doesn't faze you in the least...
You look around and think, "Wait! This is my life?!" And you can't decide if you feel more homesick or blessed... and how much you miss people scattered all over the world as you prepare for yet another series of transitions in the weeks just ahead. again.