It's official...I'm here! Twenty hours of travel split into three flights sure left me exhausted, but my low-energy state was nicely tempered by the warm welcome we received in Kenya. I arrived on Monday night in Nairobi from Amsterdam only to be greeted with a 40-minute line get my Visa. And, for the first time in my life, I was one of those guys whose name was on a sign, waiting to be picked up.
On our drive to the homestay, I got my first taste of the overwhelming poverty in Kenya. The slums we passed were undeniably real, and seeing them in person had a powerful impact. I've seen images like these before, but I didn't realize the emotional filter a camera lens could place on a setting.
That being said, our homestay for that night was nice - it had running water, toilets, and our hosts kept our stomachs full of some sort of Kenyan beef stew, rice & chai. Boy do Kenyas love their Chai!
The next day, after hours and hours of orientation, we were driven to our permanent homestay, where we met Lucy, an 18 year old girl who is our house mom! She is a warm-hearted host that is eager to learn about America from me, and about England from my fellow volunteer, Stevie.
The real surprise cam yesterday when we were walked to the school and got to meet the teachers and students. The school teaches kids ranging in age from 6 to 13 years old. It was opened in 2007 as a public school to serve the needs of the growing town of Kitengela. Already they have outgrown their facilities and are in need of expansion.
The greatest difference I've observed in the last two days between their school and American schools is the colossal amount of play time these kids have. They take various significant breaks throughout the day for the kids to run around the field, play football (soccer), volleyball, and other high-energy games.
That is all for now, hopefully I'll be able to update with some regularity over the coming weeks. Until next time!