Monday, August 30, 2010

Off the grid...

Well...I just wrote a whole new post and lost it...emphasizing the situation we are in! We have tips and ideas for getting better internet connection, but it will take a bit of time.
All is well. We are making progress every day. The Kenyans are incredible...totally friendly, sweet acting, open...ready to make our aquaintance.
Warren worked at starting at the hospital today. He made friends with the gate guards...and worked at finding the person he will be alongside in the "casualty" area. Nothing is automatic or obvious. Not a bad thing. Just a new way of relating to life and the world around us.
John started school.
I am on a steep learning curve...with everything! I will go back to Nairobi tomorrow to work on increasing our access to computer and improving our phone situation. Once we have this figured out I will post pictures...and more description!

Thursday, August 26, 2010

remember the phone squawking sound when you logged on to dial up!!?

We are hearing it again here! John asked if this is really how it used to be and how we could do anything on the computer. Remember? We couldn't do much! That is our experience again. Wow, are we ever dependent on the computer! Thankfully we have been learning how this is coped with in this Kijabe world. We aren't the only ones with kids at home and the desire to maintain connection with other places and people....
We hope to have a modem coming on Sat from Nairobi. We will find out if it brings the promised improvements to speed and agility for the computer. If it does...I will post some pictures.
We are in Kijabe and settling into our new home. We have 3 bedrooms, supplies for living...and easy, easy access to both the school and the hospital. We are literally between the two, less than a 5 minute walk from each. John says the school looks like Jurassic it is fenced and guarded. But the inside is so nice...lots of green space for 2 huge fields, a big gym, 3 or 4 tennis courts, outside basketball courts...not bad at all.
Walking through the entrance to the hospital is like walking into an entirely different many people waiting for care! Warren plans to start orienting there on Monday when John will be starting school.
There has been a lot of haze and it is winter here!, but we have been able to catch glimpses of the Rift seen from most spots on the hillside that is Kijabe.
I have heard it has been really warm in Seattle these past days. I would be envious if this was truly winter weather but "Winter" here isn't exactly that. It feels like you want a sweatshirt in the morning and evening but it is warm enough for a t-shirt and shorts during the day. We make a fire in the evening and the temperature is perfect for sleeping....which we are managing to do more of at the right times!

Wednesday, August 25, 2010

2am and sleepless...

The irresistible afternoon nap has not helped with the night time here I am writing at 2am. In a few hours we will be up and making our way to Kijabe and our new home. After a stop for staples at the grocery store our matatu will take us there...about 45 minutes by car. I look forward to feeling less caged. The city is dangerous enough that we are locked in behind the gates of the house, which are behind the gates of the neighborhood, which is surrounded by a wall, which is covered with large loops of electric barbed wire...This makes me feel caged as much as it might deter anyone from coming in. There is a golf course next to this house, but we really can't see it. The walls are too high in order to keep us "safe". Inside the house is quite pleasant, but for someone who likes to walk, run, bike...exercise and move!, this would be a struggle if I had to do it long term. Thankfully we are going to open space and ample opportunity for moving about and getting exercise. The school is ready to start and the hospital is chomping at the bit to get Warren started. We are being encouraged to take the time we need, so I hope we can do that.
We have had the chance already to meet some amazing people...brave, dedicated, committed to what they believe in and loving to the people around them. Yesterday we had chai (morning tea) with a group of people working here in Nairobi. Chai included the delicious tea...but also peanut butter cookies (i think for the Americans;) ) and boiled sweet potatoes. Peeled and served just like that. It seemed an odd food choice at 10:30am but it tasted great...and so healthy! I think I am going to adopt this. I guess a boiled sweet potato at tea will be well received by any Kenyan guest I serve. John was told he can look forward to chai breaks between 10:30-11 every school day as well! I like this system...the whole country stopping for tea....even the doctors stagger their tea breaks so that they can all have one. Nice.
Soon I will post photos of our new home. At this point it is still our 9 red bags!! But our host Peter told me that a family came last year...parents with one son...47 bags and a dog!! Can you imagine?? I guess we are traveling super light in comparison to that situation! What could be in 47 bags??
Miss you all...

Monday, August 23, 2010

A few photos....

We made it!

We are in Nairobi...tucked in our beds. The screeching cat outside our room seems to have decided to move on...and we are going to attempt sleep. The 10 hour time difference will take a few days. Our trip was uneventful, all bags arrived, and our friendly Scottish host was there for us as we exited customs. So, all is well. John had a horrible headache on the trip between London and Nairobi so we are hoping for a better day for him tomorrow! He is sad about being so far from home and Camp Firwood. Thankfully school activities start for him already on Thursday! Tomorrow we will get a look at Nairobi in the daylight.

Thursday, August 19, 2010

48 hours...and counting...

Very sad to say goodbye to many of you. We will miss you!
John is home and frantically making little connections with friends he hasn't seen all summer. He said sad goodbyes to his camp friends on Monday. Lots of transition for him in the next few weeks. He says he is excited....
Next time from Kenya...

Wednesday, August 11, 2010

Saying goodbye to MINNIE....

MINNIE left us last weekend. A very nice couple from Lynnwood came to buy her. I had to make sure that they were as excited about her as I was...and I think they were. I was sad to see her go but grateful for the fact that she held enough value to help us out. (This felt like a good time to practice my photo uploading to blog capability.)
10 more days and we will be leaving. Thank you to all of you who have been sending us off with meals, warm thoughts and contributions!