This week’s quiz

Thought it was time to stop blogging about what I miss and talk a bit about what I am enjoying out here.

Last night I enjoyed a walk to the market with James and his wife Pauline (not to be confused with Sr. Pauline) two other IT teachers at the college. Tuesday and Friday are market days in Tala. We wandered down the edge of the tarmac road talking in a lovely relaxed way. Pauline likes to test my Kiswahili and they were threatening to give me a local name. One old gentleman I met on a previous walk into town passed us on his bycicle. “Hello Mark, how are you?”, he shouted.
“I’m fine, how are you?”, I replied.
Sawa, sawa, Bwana“, he retorted smiling as he trundled down the road. Pauline told me that that was a very friendly form of address. I already liked the old gentleman for his beautiful smile. I wish I could remember his name.

At the market I bought some fresh fruit and veg. Here are some of them, I challenge you to identify all three varieties!
fruit (29k image)

One market stall man offered me some of his kitheri (maize and beans, but this time with potatoe too) while I bought onions and fresh corriander from him. Kitheri is, in fact,the most enjoyable local dish I have encountered so far. His, with the potatoe, was even nicer than the one that the cook at college prepares.

On the way back from the market I had another co-ordinated serenade from small children by the side of the road. These were different sizes and looked like a family, though I’d guess the oldest was 7 (everyone looks younger than their age here). They had lined up in front of their house and waited until I was directly in line with them, then delivered their volley: “Goo-da’hee-fning!” they shouted together.
I smiled. Oh boy did I smile. I had seen them lining up there and had not turned my head to look as I suspected they were abotu to engage me somehow. Expecting another “Mzungu” greeting I thought I’d wait and see. This one cracked my synical heart.
“Good evening, how are you?”, I responded.
“We are fine!”, they giggled and ran back to their house.


  1. Mark Says:

    OK, I have tried to fix the time-zone thing on my blog but it seems to have gotten worse. I actually posted this article on Wednesday at about quarter past nine. I will have another go at the time zone thing later. Meanwhile, please bear with me. Thanks. Mark

  2. tygger Says:

    erm .. tomatoes, papayas, some description of citrus fruit and i think guavas – but i could be wrong …

    piggie, thanks for the virtual boogie on my blog – I’m trying to tell you everything but also hoping I’m not making you feel bad for not being here. You have to keep telling yourself how envious we are of you … at some point will e-mail and tell you the stuff that can’t do up on the public domain 😉

    love you lots …

  3. Nic Says:

    finally I have managed to catch up on the blog, snakes, bats and weird fruit – you can’t ask for more than that!

    I know cybercuddles aren’t the same but you know the real thing will be waiting when you get back

    love Nic

  4. Cad Says:

    I finally got a moment to myself to read all your blog from the very beginning.
    It’s great to hear from you and all the things that you’re up to.
    Missing you a lot, I was sipping the last of your Lagavulin last night and you were in my thoughts 🙂
    Amber asks if you still have the "Mind Your Head" post-it 😀
    Have a Goo-da’hee-fning,
    Much love,

  5. Mark Says:

    Tygger, you got 2/3 right.
    Come on someone else, have a guess!

    Cad, not only do I have it but it has saved my head several times since I pinned it up on the staffroom door.

    Nic, Welcome aboard! Fancy guessing the fruit? Im going to collect those cuddles some time and I hope they’re collecting interest in the meantime!

  6. Chris O'Mung-bean Says:

    Hey, it’s Cad. Someone I even met once. Hello, come here often?!

    Like the pop-up translation Mark! Very clever. Doesn’t work on Safari browser on my mac tho, unfortunately.

    I guess that fruits is:
    1. limes (small green)
    2. papayas (big greenies)
    3. plums (red, god dunno!)

    Isabel gave me a present for no reason today: a T-shirt with the 3 pacman ghosts on it, BIG. Made me inordinately happy.

    Off to Paris tomorrow. Makes me happy too! (At last a bit of travel, and daylight until 6:30pm!)

    Release the fruitbats!

    Uncle Mung

    pps: no, I’m not drunk

  7. Mark Says:

    The answers to the quiz are as follows:

    Big green ones = papayas
    Small red ones = tomatoes
    Yellow ones = passion fruit!!

    My first experience with fresh passion! Man was I ever supprised when I cut one open!

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