Just came back from an amazing trip to Meru (about 6-7 hour matatu ride). It’s a much larger city than Sipili and they have a Nakumatt (wal-mart type store)!!!!! This trip was filled with delicious non-Kenyan food (grilled cheese sandwiches, PIZZA, minestrone, garlic cheese mashed potatoes, garlic cheese bread, more cheese, chili, scones, French toast, burgers, salad, etc), fabulous friends, flushing toilets, hot showers, wine, liquor, and an awesome hike!
On New Years Eve, we went to a club which cost us 260ksh (~$3) to get in, which went into the first drinks that we bought (it bought us 2 beers). We danced, danced, and danced! There was no countdown to the New Year, so all of us foreigners looked crazy screaming the countdown. We decided to leave around 2am, but apparently most of the locals were going to another club. Champs…
New Years Day, after being able to sleep in because roosters don’t crow every hour starting from 3am in Meru and there were no goats and donkeys nearby, we went on an awesome hike and saw 2 waterfalls! The hike itself was probably around 4-5km or so, with the first 2-3 km on a big road, but once we went off the road, it was quite an experience! The first 0.5km started off really steep so we were snowboarding down on the dirt and grabbing trees and vines to either keep us from falling, or to slow us down after falling and sliding down the large hill. Then, the next 2 km consisted of up down up down up down, climb around/through this tree, don’t fall in this stream, up down up down, climb a few boulders, don’t fall into that marsh, jump across this swamp, up and down a few more boulders and finally we have reached the big waterfall! We even got to go directly behind the waterfall, which is an experience that I highly recommend if you ever get a chance!
Now, I’m back in Sipili, in my lonely, non-cozy, still furniture-less house. I have set up plastic bags around my sitting room so people can sit on them though. The fundi (carpenters/handymen) were supposed to come to my house to start measuring and give me an estimate before Christmas, but surprise surprise, they’re taking their sweet time. Eh whatever, they’ll eventually show up.
Anyways, school starts tomorrow! I am so excited to meet the students and to start having responsibilities and obligations again! Before the trip, these past 2 weeks have been filled with, staring at walls, staring at trees, chewing sugar cane, purposely getting lost so that it will take some time for me to find my way back, reading, sudoku, and more sitting and staring at absolutely nothing. Once in awhile there will be some kind of awkward conversation with a local who either doesn’t believe I’m from America or that I’m actually living in this town for the next 2 years to teach their children. Once I actually start teaching and these locals start getting used to seeing this “mzungu” in their town, it’ll get better. Hopefully in a month I’ll stop being the center of attention wherever I go and people will start ignoring me, again… hopefully. Oh, I did help my counterpart to plant his small shamba! We planted about 125 spinach plants, watermelon, cabbage, cauliflower, and some other stuff I can’t remember. But, in 1 month or so, some of them will be ready to eat. Right now, he just has fruit that are ripening, so I’m kind of on a fruit binge right now.