One of our main reasons for coming to Kenya was the hope that we would be able to meet and get to know Kenyans. As obvious as this may sound, it can be challenging when you find yourself on a station with a lot of ex-pat people who are involved in the same work. Although everyone is very friendly, and we learn new names of Kenyans every day, tonight was the first time where someone came over and spent time with us in a way that felt like we might become friends.
This past Thursday Warren and I had the opportunity to ride in the hospital ambulance to a clinic across the Rift Valley where we got to spend the day together seeing patients at a small understaffed and under supported community clinic. Doctors from Kijabe Hospital visit this clinic once each month. We also had a CO intern with us (like a physician assistant in training) and a nutritionist. Most, if not all, of the people we saw there are Maasai. On the way there we saw many of them along the side of the road herding cows and goats, most of them in the traditional bright clothing and beads that we think of due to National Geographic pictures we have seen. Amazing.
One of the patients mentioned that she had a family member who works at Rift Valley Academy as a gate guard. So...last night when Warren and I were on a walk, just before dark, we met Samuel...the family member. He initiated the conversation and we made the connection. We invited him to come over today. This evening he came...with many beautiful beaded things that his wife has made, and full of stories and easy conversation. We had chai and icecream and heard about his life growing up in a Maasai village. His wife and kids are still living in a Maasai village, only a short distance from here, and he goes to be with them on his days off. He is quite eager for us to come to his village and meet his family.
Warren was asking about the animals they come across and where they are. He could not emphasize enough how dangerous elephants are! He must have said this 10 times. Apparently you can run from them if you are running downhill because the elephants ears fall over their eyes and make them blind!? But uphill...you are in trouble. They are fast and their ears are back against their head! Keep this in mind!
This seems like valuable information and none of our other friends have ever shared this with us!