Hello there!

Welcome to yet another daily blog! I write this on a full stomach of delicious pasta and sausage cooked by the lovely Mama Violet. I know that recounting what I have just consumed may seem strange, but I only do so to comfort my father; who I know for a fact is worried that I am not eating enough. To any other worried parents, I assure you that we are eating like kings. Although, I have to admit that tears of joy flowed from my eyes when I found the only shop in the market that sells chocolate.

It is strangely quiet back at the convent today, with our health team, accompanied by Bryce Kreiser, out on an excursion to teach a valuable lesson on nutrition in Kalundola. With them absent, I cannot help but recall all of the amazing memories that we have already formed in our short time together in Zambezi.

The most recent memory that I will cherish was the #Zamball basketball game on May 28th. Our group of Zags had the honor of challenging a group of Zambians who invited us to a game. Not to boast too much, but I think that Gonzaga students should be tenting for our pickup game rather than ordinary Gonzaga basketball games. Why you might ask? The court had “lots of cracks and grass scattered about” to quote Megan Hayes. The crooked hoop, cracked cement and added nature elements provided new thrilling obstacles that I’m sure would provide extra entertainment for any basketball fan.

In addition to this, audiences would be in awe of our team MVP Chloe Sciammas. In the first minute or so of the game, Chloe scored a whopping 6 points. This prompted all of the spectators to yell “Check your watches, it’s Sham time!” I also guarantee that Father Joseph’s Steph Curry status 3 pointers would make any crowd go wild.

My team proceeded to pull ahead, but in true Gonzaga fashion, we blew our 15-point lead in the last few minutes. We lost 34-30, but I still had an absolute blast. The game ended with lots of sweaty hugs, handshakes, and bonding with new friends.

While I love this memory, there is a part of me that is sad looking back on it. Before the game, I was adamant on not playing. I felt that I would drag the team down because of my limited basketball skills. Even though the game was just for fun, I was still criticizing myself and convincing myself that I was not deserving enough to play. I only decided to participate because of Maurie Harbick’s encouragement. He simply would not accept my silly excuses, which I am so thankful for.

For a number of years, I have struggled with self-worth. I constantly tell myself that I am not enough. I tell myself that I am not beautiful enough, not smart enough, and recently, I was convincing myself that I was not mentally strong enough to come on this adventure to Zambezi.

While this is a battle that I am sure I will continue to fight, I am practicing “giving myself grace” as Rachel Hass has advised me to do.

I am becoming aware that I do have a lot of value and worth to bring to the table. I can proudly say that I can capture the attention of 55 Zambian children in my classroom, all of them eager to participate. I am brave, not only for pushing myself out of my comfort zone, but for killing any spider, no matter how big, here at the convent. Lastly, I feel beautiful in my chitenges.

I am working towards not allowing self-doubt to take away from the joy around me. Here in Zambezi, and back at home in the states, there is so much joy to be felt. Joy, in my not so humble opinion, is something that should never be sacrificed.

Peace and love,

Caitlyn Moore – ’21


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9 Responses to #Zamball

  1. Randy Moore says:

    So glad to read your words, and to know that you are eating well! Although we may not post or comment, all of us are reading the blogs everyday. We are thankful for the pictures all writers are painting with words. Everyone is doing a wonderful job bringing your experiences to our mind’s eye. And thanks for bringing other names of ZAGs and ZAMs into the story. I know I love hearing of the interactions between everyone participating.

    We have never doubted your bravery, strength, or determination. I continue to admire you and love you so very much.


    PS – You will now be in charge of spider resolution when you get home. And please, no more jumping off bridges 🙂

  2. Christina Sciammas says:


    Thank you for your post. You seem so thoughtful, caring, sensitive and (spiders) super
    brave! Thank you for mentioning Chloe! I never knew her to be
    a basketball player! Must be natural Zag basketball skills. Chloe I miss you so much. Today was tough but reading about you was just what I needed to read.
    Kelen also sent me some great pictures of you looking hapoy.
    Love You,


  3. Taylor Dawley says:

    Caitlyn, I would definitely tent to watch this team play. It is really inspiring to read about your experiences and hear what you are learning about yourself on this trip. I’m sure you will have incredible insights and stories to share when you’re back at Gonzaga.

    Ps. Leila- I hope you joined the team and got some practice in! The raptors are gonna need your help in the finals if they want to beat the warriors this year.
    I found a coffee shop in a Chicago to read yesterday and was thinking about our Saturday traditions. I can’t wait to get coffee at Cedar and hear about all the incredible things you’re doing right now.

  4. Hikaru says:

    Caitlyn – may I just say that I was smiling reading this post in reference to the Zamball game and without having met you, I think you’ve got a great sense of humor. I am grateful for your reflection.

    Chloe – it’s too bad that we never got to play basketball together at the RFC. Sounds like you got some mad skills, girl (insert muscle emoji here). Loving this ready-to-play-defense photo of you!!
    Rachel – those are sweet words and great reminders to all. Hope your knee is doing well.

    Hugs to all of you, and when times get challenging, just eat a little bite of that chocolate 🙂

  5. Jeffrey Kreiser says:

    Caitlyn –

    Great post. Thanks for your vulnerability and stoked you were in the basketball game as it is our family favorite game. As I wonder what our son Bryce is up to, I appreciated your naming him as the “add on” to the health team. Glad he is stretching his boundaries and joining in these other teams efforts. Heather and I are praying for your whole team – closer to Jesus, more clear about yourselves and more aware of the broad beautiful world in which we learn and mature.

    Jeff Kreiser

  6. Kelen says:

    Heck ya team! These posts bring me to tears as I think of you all finding your space and rhythm in Zambezi. Your time seems to be continuously falling into place, allowing the smaller unintentional moments to move and surprise you in the best way. May the roosters and sunsets continue to bring you peace – have a great trip this weekend!
    – Josh, thinking of ya today. I hope all has been well thus far.
    – Annika thanks for the photo of Mama Violet, my hero. I keep staring at how beautiful is.
    – Isaac I found my “World’s Okayest Barista” pin and got annoyed for a split second and then thought of how great you are. I hope Zambezi is giving you yet another great experience to add to such a full year you’ve had
    – Janeen, thank you for continuously sharing your soul. I am thinking of you as you continued to be caught off guard with the soul of Zambezi and the ZagTeam. You’re awesome.
    – Chloe Debby sent photos of you at Aerobics class, Gonzaga Parent & Families posted about you, and I’ve had like 3 of my business students message me today – needless to say you’re on my mind. Amongst all of these it seems as thought things are going well and I am so happy for you. I’m praying for you as God continues to assure you that Zambezi is where you’re meant to be. Stay cool and crazy and ~fun~ ya dweeb.
    – Caitlyn we don’t know each other but I just wanted to share that I am so proud of you. You are a gift meant to be given and shared with those around you. Cherish yourself and these small moments that build you up. As you shine, you will unconsciously inspire others to do the same.

    Kisu Mwane,

  7. Sophie Marks says:

    Megan Hayes,

    I was thinking about you as I was lying in bed tonight, in a totally non-creepy way! I miss you, and your voice, and getting to talk to my best friend! I’m currently a few days into training, and I wish I could tell you all about it! But I do gotta say, there are some mega cuties! (That was probably embarrassing for me to say, oh well, lol)

    Although, I am also so excited for you and all your experiencing! I’m so proud of you! I can’t wait to hear all about it! I love you, and I miss doing life with you! I hope you haven’t pooped your pants yet, or if you have I hope it’s a great story:) Everyone there please give Megan a big hug for me, or better yet, some good cuddles and pillow talk!

    Sending some prayers and love to you all from Spokane

    Sophie Marks

  8. Barb Haas says:

    Thank you all for these posts. Rachel Haas – sorry you couldn’t get in there and help out the team. Phase IV is coming. Love you!!! – MOM

  9. Robyn Moore says:

    Dear Caitlyn,

    That’s my girl, finding the only chocolate in town! I hope you save a piece for your mama!

    It is clear that you are surrounded by wonderful people! A big thank you to Maurie Harbick for encouragement and to Rachael Hass, for reminding Caitlyn to give herself grace.

    I am so impressed with you and your fellow Zags! This adventure you are all on, is surely making the world a better place. Young children are advancing in their education and different cultures are appreciated. This experience will have a positive impact on everyone!

    Katie Caitlyn, I love you so much! Never doubt what you are capable of! You rock!

    P.S. Bring chocolate!

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