The Odd Couple

About a month ago we were driving to a birthday party, when Jo said, “Hey, there’re some white people.” We gawk like locals at white skin. Upon closer look, they were our friends Daniel and Leah, giving away bananas for free on the side of the road. This task of altruism proved more difficult than they expected, since the locals were wary of accepting bananas from these strange wazungu. We never did determined how they acquired the bananas in the first place, or where this idea came from.

Daniel and Leah are two of my favourite people here in Tanzania, the definitive odd couple. They aren’t dating, but the two are inseparable. Both are theology students at Makumira, a Lutheran college down the road. Leah is a short, obnoxious American. “Did I cross a line?” “Yes.” “Well, at least I know where it is now.” Daniel is a quirky, flirtatious German. “Would you like to come closer?” he asks Jo one night at dinner in his thick German accent. She just laughs, keeping her distance due to a bad flu. Both of them have been helping out with the musical: Leah creating masks and other props, Daniel creating an ‘In the Making’ segment.

Last night we had a farewell dinner for them. Actually, they made dinner for themselves and invited us along: potato salad, hot dogs, German sausage, and marshmallows. Their friend Michael was also there, another German. He sang a campfire song in Thai, complete with actions that Daniel, Leah, and Nadine all acted out. I couldn’t stop laughing.


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