My first night in Mozambique my team stayed in Maputo and at about 2:00 in the morning both my roommate Carrie and I woke up. (I think I’m finally over the jet lag!) For the next couple of hours we both laid there under the mosquito tent covering our beds and tried to discern what could possibly be making the noise we were hearing. It was very rhythmic and electronic sounding, just a small little beep every other second or so, but it sounded like it moved throughout the house. We talked about it at breakfast the next morning and all of our team had heard it, but no one could figure out what it was, until Will (our fearless and wise meta-data-minded team leader) informed us that it was a bat! Or a “mocho.” Now every night we fall asleep to the sometimes quiet and sometimes not so quiet (although by 9:00 we’re too tired to care!) beeping of the mocho.
Another sound that we experience every day is the singing of the cooks! To summon us to each meal the Mozambicans sing and let us know that the food is ready. It’s really fun! Singing seems to be really important here. The first night our host asked us if we wanted to sing a song before dinner and when we all looked around at each other very confused she informed us that it was unacceptable for any group of young people to not know how to sing! Since then we’ve been learning a short song or two each day in Portuguese and English.
In a nerdier, linguistics sense, over the past two days I’ve been learning all about the sounds of Mozambique! In our orientation we’ve been going over Bantu sound systems (Bantu is the language family in southern Africa) and just today I received the phonetic inventory of the language I’m going to be helping with in Milange! My team and I leave on Monday for this “vila.”
Please be praying for safe travels (I’ll right more about the crazy “chapas” later) and healthy, godly relationships. It’s been great going off on all of these excursions into town and getting to know both my team and the people here. I’m looking forward to more!