Tuesday, June 14, 2011

Chillin' in Kibera

Man, I have been slammed these last few weeks.  Or months.  I don't even know.  Kenya, Haiti, Israel, Kenya again... It's exhausting.  And awesome.  But yeah, exhausting.

Right now I'm in Kibera Slum in Nairobi, my "home base" while I spend the summer in Kenya with World Next Door's summer interns.  I'm living once again with the family of Pastor Fred, the amazing Kenyan pastor I wrote about two summers ago.

It's great.  Being in the slum night and day can definitely be uncomfortable at times (more on that in my WND article going live tomorrow), but I'm having a blast. 

Cute alert: there is a little stray kitten that lives in my compound here in Kibera.  Poor thing has no idea it's going to be dinner some day.  KIDDING!!! Nobody here eats cats!  Are you kidding me?  Sick.  I think I'll name it Muffins McNasty, because that's an awesome name.

Um, anyway...

So far, the interns have done remarkably well, especially considering the crazy stuff that has happened to WND interns in the past:  Scott having his lungs try to eat their way out via his soul (a.k.a. staph pneumonia), Christine opening her body up as a safe haven for countless tropical diseases looking for a home, Chris almost getting thrown in a Ukrainian jail, Scott (he made the list twice??) having a policeman's AK47 jabbed in his chest (don't worry... it was all a misunderstanding)...

The worst we've had so far this summer is one female intern having lewd comments spoken to her by a creepy man on a deserted street and another texting me in a panic because her host brothers were taking her clubbing against her will (again, it was all just a misunderstanding...). So far so good, right?

Actually, reading back over that list, I'm surprised anyone signs up to be a WND intern.  Good thing I had them sign waivers.  :)

Anyway, moving on.  I'm not going to overload this blog with pictures (you can see my flickr account for my favorites), but occasionally I'll take a picture or two that I really, really love.  Those I'll have to share.  Like this one!

 Random transition... What I'm reading right now:
  • The Years of Rice and Salt by Kim Stanley Robinson - Second time I've read this one.  Really fascinating alternative history novel that tells the story of modern history if the black plague had killed off 99% of Europe.  The book follows the same 5-6 main characters via their reincarnation into new bodies (they keep the same first letters of their names, but forget their previous lives).  Interesting technique!  Verdict: RECOMMENDED
  • Legacy of Ashes by Tim Weiner -  A history of the CIA based on documents released in the last 10 years or so.  Only a little ways into the book (say, the 1950's) and let's just say the CIA isn't exactly doing a bang-up job so far. Don't worry, I'm sure they'll come around and become an altruistic force for good in the world, right?  Verdict: SO FAR, SO GOOD
  • Deep Ancestry by Spencer Wells - Actually just finished this one.  Super interesting book about genetics and what gene sequencing has told us about genealogy and where everyone came from originally. Verdict: RECOMMENDED
  • Red Mars by Kim Stanley Robinson - Just started this. The first of a trilogy of "hard" sci-fi books about the not-too-distant colonization of Mars.  "Hard" sci-fi meaning there are no ion beams, Romulans or quantum flux, but technology that could, conceivably, come about in the next 100 years.  Verdict: SO FAR, SO GOOD
There are other books I'm in the middle of, but I didn't bring them with me to Kenya because of weight.  Yeah, I know it's weird, but I usually have 6 or 7 books going at one time.  I like to keep things interesting.  :)

Well, I guess that's it for now.  I'll do my best to keep this blog updated as I travel. 


Muffins McNasty says "later" too. 


lwaad said...
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lwaad said...
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