Saturday, January 22, 2011

christmas story follow up...

For those of you who read Warren's story at Christmas...the one about the girl they were able to facilitate cardiac surgery Sudan, with Italian surgeons!? is the follow up from Samuel(Warren's Kenyan colleague. He is able to communicate with her.

Hi all,
Am filled with great gratitude and joy as I write this. All your effort towards
Maria's medical care has been awesome. She is back home with her family and
tells me that she is literally running around.
Maria and her family are very grateful to you all that facilitated her surgery.
May the good Lord bless you. Have a great 2011!

Beth, from Boston, was the primary instigator in making this happen. She is an incredible woman who was here for a few months as part of her medical residency. She knew of the surgeons in Sudan, she found a sponsor, she offered up her own ID...copies of passport and credit card to be presented at the airport for proof of purchase...or whatever it is when you have to show who bought the ticket...risking the misplacement of this information. Maria is very fortunate to have come to Kijabe during the time when Beth was here. Warren and Samuel were able to do ground work here...both the US and the Kenyan connections were needed. Very cool to see a great outcome!

Warren, Erika, Joe, and our new Swiss friends who are here for a few months, all went to Uganda this weekend so that they could raft the Nile! Warren just texted me,"BACK AT TENT. WOW! SO WORTH IT. WE MUST DO THIS TOGETHER. MORE LEGIT THAN I GUESSED. BOAT FLIPPED 3 TIMES!"
John and I stayed back because he was signed up for the SAT today. We really should have bagged it and gone!!

Friday, January 14, 2011

hair kenya style...

It seemed like a good plan...get hair twists, as the Kenyans do! and have hair that won't require much of anything in terms of care for weeks, even months. Wow! 2 days and 16 hours later!?! Erika has a head of beautiful twists, an adaptation to braiding that gives a slightly softer and very incredible look. She also has 4 packs of synthetic extensions added in! If she can tolerate it, it should stay for up to 2 months. It is a lot. We will have to see how it goes. She is determined to stay with it at this point. It is fun to try it, and besides...after investing 16 hours of time into the process you don't want to take it out too quickly. Apparently the removal process is quite lengthy as well.
It does look quite amazing...and the Kenyans Love it! So she has started well, already participating in a very common cultural activity. She looks lovely.

Today we spent time in Mathare, a slum in Nairobi that I referenced earlier. It is quite the place, impossible to describe. But the children were there...ready and eager to begin their "how are you?" chant. Children are adorable, playful and ready for interaction everywhere. Such a gift.

Saturday, January 8, 2011

erika arrived!

Erika made it safely to join us on Thursday night. She has already managed to go on a hike, coach a soccer practice and get a bit sunburned...Watch out for equatorial sun, esp. when leaving months of Seattle winter! But all is well. Today she left on the back of the pikipiki driven by John...headed for a hike up Mt Longonot. Don't want to waste any time! I am sure she will be driving the pikipiki next time. I don't think she has been sleeping much...her body wants to be on the other side of the world. But there is a lot of new stuff to keep her attention during the day...and she will adjust quickly.
It feels great to wake up and remember that she is here with us.

Warren is adjusting to all new workmates. January in Kenya is like July in America in terms of working in a teaching hospital. All the new interns have arrived and the trained ones have left! It will take a few months....

The other day one of my local vegie seller friends came by because she had been experiencing pain in her ear for 4-5 days, leading to pain in her facial area and jaw. She looked tired and quite ill. She wondered if we could help her. Warren walked up as we were talking and I asked him to check her out. He looked in her ear and thought he saw something. It ended up being a tiny black Maasai bead?! Easy fix!
Who knows how it got there!? She seemed to have no idea. But we put it in an envelope so that she could show her friends back at the vegie market. Now this is a source of great amusement when we see them all. She is back to normal and feeling great. You never know...

Joe went to a neighbor's the other day and learned how to make butter from the cream we get from our fresh milk delivery. We have a very nice container of fresh cream butter in our fridge now. We used it on pancakes this morning...along with fresh passion fruit, mangos and bananas...Pretty nice.