Horse Power?

I have been responsible for the auto shop here.  There are three guys who work there.  One of them is Reuben.  I came out to the shop the other day and saw him here.  I thought it was a cool picture.


I took this picture in the Fairlane supermarket near our house at Kenyatta Market a while back.  It says a lot about how things work here.

Individually priced cable (zip) ties.  Someone got paid to to label each one.  They are 3 shillings, about 4 cents each.

When I go to lunch at some places near work the napkins are cut in half, by hand, to make them go father.

The Last Decompression Ride

A while back I wrote about a decompression ride.  Last Thursday I went on one last ride with Alan.  We went on a route that I had ridden with Ryan Williams back in early 2009.  It was Kiserian to Kajiado over to Magadi road and back to Kiserian, just over 200km.  It covers some very beautiful country, especially now when most of it was green.  We went down just at the rim of the Rift Valley and came back north just below the rim.

We passed the “famous” Pimples Pub on the way to Kiserian.

Alan recounted some flights where he had to remain very low over the edge of the rift because of clouds much like this.

We stopped in Kajiado for some fuel and cold cokes.  When I came out of the duka (shop) Alan was surrounded.  They were all checking out the motorcycles.

Because of the rain and all the green, the cows were very healthy.  This made the Maasai very happy.

Sometimes, living in Nairobi, we deal with some horrible traffic situations.  When Alan and I went on a ride in California back in September of last year he said on more than one occasion that a slow truck was “ruining his life.”  I commented to him at this point that the jack ass just would not get off the road.

Seeing this boy reminded me of a conversation back at our estate.  The wazee (elders) were discussion how life used to be in Kenya (and is in places).  They said you stayed out with the animals until your younger brother was old enough to watch them.  Then you could go to school.  So there used to be 14 year old boys in first grade.  “Lord help you if you were the last born,” one of them said.  It reminded me of when Samuel went to find the new king of Israel.

Elite group?

Last week I played 90 minutes with Santiago Street Boys.  I got to hear some interesting stories during the week.  There were a lot of people who saw me play there, including someone from the hangar where I work.  Even some of the gate guards from our estate saw me and told me there were more than a few people who said, “I am not leaving until I see the mzungu (european/white man) touch the ball.”  When I told Will, one of the guys who works for me, “I stood out because I was the oldest guy there… oh and one more thing.”  He replied, “You were also the tallest?”  He has a great sense of humor.

This week I played again, but this time only played the first half.  Only a few minutes into the match we earned a corner and in the ensuing play, there was a deflection that came right to me.  Thankfully I kept my head and put it right in the upper corner.  I have no idea how many wazungu (plural of mzungu) have scored at the field in Kibera, but I imagine it is a small group.  I already had so many people looking at me, I did not feel like celebrating at the time.  But I have told the story more than once.

I left the match at half with the score tied 1-1.  Unfortunately we ended up losing 6-2.  Ouch.  It reminds me a bit of pick-up basketball, no one wants to play defense.  Hopefully I will get to play again.