Sunday, February 21, 2010

Pedestrians do not have the right of way!

This is interesting for a country that statistically has 1 car per 40 people skewed by the difference between the urban and rural populations. Most Kenyans live rurally and in those areas it’s probably a greater ratio of say 500 people to 1 car. So I ask why do pedestrians have to keep their eyes open for the cars? Just move before they hit you!

So the past couple of weeks have kept me busy which is why I have not had the chance to write until now. Good news as you can see, is the photos. We had a big reception for a group of Americans who came to see what Village Hopecore International is doing here in Kenya. It was a lot of work to organize the VHI funded groups to come and also invite entertainment, all of who are affiliated with VHI. We started about 2 hours later than planned, which made for a very long and hot day for the people who arrived on time. It was success and worth it! One of the Americans who visited decided 4 years ago to put off her visit to Kenya and spend that money on sponsoring a group. She finally saved enough to come and visit.

Yesterday, I went to the town of Meru, which is about 40 km north of Chogoria and maybe 10 km north of the equator. I took a public bus call a Matatu to get there. They wait until the vehicle is full before leaving the station, which they call a stage here. The nice thing about this is you can find yourself ready to go somewhere and be the one person the vehicle needs to go. Usually if one has left recently another will fill up pretty quickly. There’s no worry about being late and missing your bus. The problem about this is there is little or no regulation on how many people can be stuffed into the vehicle. So as we are driving along the road to Meru if anyone is waiting on the side of the road for a vehicle to pass by they will stop and stuff them in the vehicle. This especially happens in hours before dusk and nightfall. As I was returning to Chorgoria it was a little later than I hoped and at one point the vehicle which has 14 seats plus the driver had about 23 passengers, 2 hustlers to get passengers and take their fare and 1 driver. We also had a TV set taking up one seat for a while. Anyway, it really made me appreciate getting around on foot and taking my time and space to get from one location to another.

So I find that I am easily distracted in the Home Health Visit part of my job by the animals. I love the cows and goats. The other day I found a little black kitten curled up in a bag of corn. He was very happy to have a scratch and cuddle. I want to pet the dogs but as they are usually present to protect, they are seldom friendly. Also I don’t want to deal with the potential of rabies. The goats here are very soft and are a special breed for milking. At least here in Chogoria we are blessed with milder temperatures and a fair climate to have European looking cows, sheep and goats, which produce more milk and become pretty big when well fed. A far cry from what I found in Senegal where the cows had barely enough milk for their calves and the goats could produce enough surplus milk for human consumption for just a short while after giving birth to their kids.

There is definitely a lot of potential here. Though I think other parts of Kenya are not so fortunate…

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