Tuesday, April 22, 2008

April 22, 2008 - Misery Loves Company

I have recently realized how little I have posted on the blog this month. The thing is, once you have lived somewhere for awhile and are into a life/work routine, it seems a lot less interesting to write about! Do people really want to hear about the mundane details of our life?!

Things in Kenya are pretty calm these days – the political agreement has been all sorted out and now the government needs to get working to help all of the displaced Kenyans living in horrible camp conditions. Otherwise, we are really enjoying our recreation center membership – the pool is really nice and relaxing! We are watching a lot less TV because of the time we spend there (except for American Idol on Tuesday and Thursday nights for sure). I am sure you know that a Kenyan won the Boston Marathon yesterday – no surprise there! There is one particular tribe that Kenyan marathoners usually come from, called Kalenjin, and they are amazingly fast!!!

The only other news I have to report is that Kristoffer and I have both been home today with a stomach bug. It is hard to tell whether it is something we ate or if one of us picked up a bug and gave it to the other. The reality, though, is that we have only moved from the bed to the couch back to the bed back to the couch (with a lot of complaining involved) and both still feel pretty crappy at the end of the day. We’re hoping that it is only a 24 hour bug and that we are okay tomorrow. Today is the first day we have been really bummed that we haven’t hired a housekeeper – it would be really nice to have someone take care of us since we have never been sick at the same time before!

Kristoffer says:
Since we have nothing new to report, let me tell you about my driving experience on Saturday. Saturday morning I left the house at 9:30 and went to the UN to meet up with 2 drivers who were taking a World Food Programme Toyota Land Cruiser to the WFP’s mechanic on the other side of Nairobi. I wanted to use that mechanic because I am tired of dealing with sketchy characters and I thought this would be a guy I could trust if the WFP uses him. I was supposed to follow them and they were taking a shortcut through some dodgy neighborhoods of Nairobi so they specifically reminded me to lock my doors and roll up all of my windows, which we always do anyway. I thought it would be a piece of cake following the Land Cruiser because it was quite old – but boy! Those Toyotas can really move! The female driver drove like she was competing in Formula One! The 45-minute drive really pushed my driving skills to the limit. I didn’t want to be lost in the middle of some sketchy slums so I drove cow-catcher to cow-catcher (that is a joke for the Danes), which means I drove bumper to bumper no matter what it took. I cut off a thousand other cars and didn’t lose sight of the Toyota. When we finally arrived, the Kenyan driver stepped out of the car and said, “Wow, Kristoffer! You can really drive! You drive like a matatu! I am very impressed. The Mzungu [white person] can drive!” That is when you know you’ve been in Kenya too long – when you start to drive like the insane mini-buses! It was a milestone for me having always stood in the shadow of my brother, who can master driving any vehicle known to man. It was also probably a good thing that Lisa wasn’t in the car with me clutching the dashboard and gasping with every turn.

Also, Lisa and I have officially come up with a system for categorizing the ever-growing potholes around us on the streets of Nairobi.

1. Pot hole – not deeper than 1 foot and can be passed by a skilled driver without any major damage to the car and/or passengers in the car.
2. Ditch – not deeper than 1 foot but very wide and takes up the entire lane; cannot be passed, the driver must drive through it. The ditch will always get a huge gasp out of Lisa when we are in it.
3. Crater – unlimited depth and extreme width; it takes up most of both lines and however the driver chooses to handle the crater will be at extreme risk to vehicle, passengers, pedestrians, and other vehicles as well.
Good thing I am such a good driver! –KW

Ok, so that’s all the news from Nairobi. Writing this blog is officially the most activity we have had all day in our stomach-flu state. I think we need to take an evening nap now.

LMW

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