What can I say??? This is Ian jumping on to our (Anne’s) blog while she’s learning to make Ugali in the kitchen.  Ugali is that staple food here and it is a thick corn meal past that’s eaten with everything.  This internet connection is so intermittent and slow here that I can’t really post photos now, which is unfortunate because the visuals here are indescribable.  We’ve been in Thika for 2 days now and I swear it feels like Thika is as far from Nairobi as Nairobi is from Cedar Hills.     Yes, Nairobi is a third world city but living in Mexico City prepared me well for that.  Thika  is like Nairobi meets little house on the Prarie.   I have chickens oin my house, and what creature comforts we had in Nairobi seem like a distant memory.   I think all the bugs that are not in Nairobi left and came here.  We have all kinds and in biblical proportions.  This morning after sweeping up close to a paper lunch bag FULL of bugs off the floor (not exagerating here and this is where a picture is needed to do justice to the topic we’re talking about live bugs too)  I was thinking how bad the biblical plagues must have been to actually drive people away.  Our bugs were pretty close to the threshold for me, but the locals aren’t even phazed.  In fact Esther (a woman helping us learn to wash our own clothes and cook local food) told me that she would sweep up the bugs and give them to the cooks to fry up.  Side note, a chicken is walking past me in the “living room”….now walked out the front door. 

Eli was standing by the back door this afternoon when a group of about 30 school aged kids spotted him from road at the front fence.  they started yelling Ku ja hapa!  Ku ja mzungu!  Come here, get over here whitey.  Well, we decided to go visit so we Eli and I went to the fence and they acted like he was a rockstar.  Kids were yelling and straining to touch and rub him.  He was a little freaked out at first, seriously they acted like beatles fans trying to touch John Lennon.  But after a minute he was comfortable and started doing tricks and climbing the fence.  The kids stayed around for an hour or so until they were convinced we would not be coming back for more.   Dirty, skinny, beautiful children…they are why we came.

Our fridge came standard with a locking door….which I’ve actually considered using to keep busy hands lucy out of it.  Our light bulbs are bare.  Our shoes are all red…in two days.  Our underwear is hanging inside out on a line in the front yard.  Our stomachs are full, our hearts are hopeful, and our new life is never dull or easy.  

try to post some pics soon.  Ian


8 responses to this post.

  1. Posted by Grammy on May 7, 2009 at 6:12 pm

    WOW!! What an incredible experience. Want to know your specific prayer requests. Looking forward to pics.


  2. Posted by Er on May 7, 2009 at 7:03 pm

    Wow – do the bed tents do double duty for keeping bugs out? What kind of bugs? cockroaches? *shudder*
    That red dirt – in Hawaii – man, it gets in everything and never comes out.


    • Posted by mayfamily on May 7, 2009 at 7:51 pm

      The bed tents are for keeping out malaria mosquitos. Even the locals in Thika use the ones dipped in insecticide…

      The red dirt, you are right….it is difficult to get out. I asked if that was why floors were painted that color, but no one knew. That would make sense though.


  3. Posted by Bonita on May 7, 2009 at 8:08 pm

    So many questions: How is your back door facing your front gate? Is your electric supply good? How are Eli and Lucia handling the bug issue? Are you going to iron the cloths hanging on the line? Did you wash them by hand or with a hand operated machine?
    Comment: Chickens walking through house reminds me of your Laidlaw home and your pet chickens. You are well prepared to make them pets! Bugs as big as rats? Once again prepared to name and make pets! Connected with Angelika in Ivory Coast on Facebook. She read your blog. They have to go to town to get internet because they can’t get it where they live. Slow but better than nothing, right? My mind’s eye can see those dirty, skinny, beautiful children – God’s precious ones. So much to be thankful for, so much to pray about. Love you. Give Anne a hug for me. God will provide a way for her to learn to make peace with dinner supply for others (yuk). Mom


  4. Posted by Lillian Barch on May 7, 2009 at 8:33 pm

    Oh Ann, talk about a room with a view!!!
    So happy to read your blogs, you put a smile on my face. I pray for you and the family for your health and safety. I am reading a book called “Poisonwood Bible” It is about a missionary family in the early 60’s who leave Georgia to do their work in Africa.
    I mentioned it to Erin, I can not believe you are mentioning the same living conditions that the book talks about in the 60’s. Do not know if you can get a copy, but you should try….I will mail it to you if you think it will ever get there 🙂
    Love and prayers, Lil


  5. Posted by Ron Stull on May 8, 2009 at 3:14 am


    That red dirt is something else. I made a mistake there last time and wore a white shirt that is now permanently RED. Good to hear you are meeting the locals. It has always been amazing to see their smiles considering the hardships they face everyday. Seeing those kids serves as the motivator to do what you were called to do.

    IF you break out a soccer ball I guarantee you will have 200 new best friends. You better go mow that grass out front, build a couple of goals and invite the neighbors over!



  6. Posted by Jenn on May 8, 2009 at 6:16 am

    thanks for the post! Still praying for you all.


  7. Posted by Erin on May 8, 2009 at 6:25 am

    Dude. Dude. The bugs, dude. I am just picturing Eli the whitey rockstar and i wishing I could have seen that. Bust out the camera and take some video next time while you are still a novelty. Love you guys and miss you terribly.


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