Today, we arrived at the Learning Center to pick up Alfred. Even though we had a long day's drive ahead of us, tea and mandazi (doesn't every culture eat some version of fried dough?) were waiting for us when we arrived. So we sat with our Ray of Hope friends while children arrived to the Little Ray of Hope. Once we finished, we were on the road!
|The students posing for Classy Martin, who taught them |
how to hula on our last trip!
After visiting the local schools, we headed up county to check on one more student--Sharon--who is at a (public) girls boarding school. It was a two hour drive, and as we left the city behind, the scenery grew more green and lush. The air smelled clean and fresh (except when a diesel-fueled vehicle passed us).
We turned into the school and waited to meet with Sharon. The school is in the shadow of Mt. Kenya, which was covered by clouds. It was lunch time and we saw students smiling, laughing, running. Cows and chickens roamed amongst the students on the playground. A shipment of food supplies arrived and several of the girls ran to help unload the food. There was a sense of safety here that most girls never can feel when they are in Kwangware.
|Karen with a student at the Girl's boarding school|
|Alfred with his grandmother|
In Kenya, I am so conscientious of how many people there are here, and how closely they live together. Children at the Ray of Hope school sit so close that there is no open space on the tables they learn at. On the busses and public taxi’s, people are nearly sitting on each other’s laps. It can be uncomfortable ~ we Westerner’s are used to “having our space”. And yet, I think we miss out on something.
|Alfred, Kirsti and Grandma|
The gift that I received today was unconditional love from people I just met. And while we are not a culture of living closely together, there is a lot I can do just to continue to give that love. So, my friend Dominique, be prepared for a big hug when I get home!