Friday, November 27, 2009

African Update # 11 2009

             The Crater                                    

Today we took off for some outside rest and relaxation. We have been working hard and we needed a break. It was a fun day and we took advantage of the beautiful weather we’ve been having and took Joel and friends to see the Crater. Our day started with our “live in comedian” George, busting in our room trying to act like a Mommy. He had strapped Michelle Haviylah on his back and was trying to act like he knew what he was doing. He almost lost her once and you could tell by the look on her face, that little Haviylah had no confidence in this make shift mommy. After a good breakfast of eggs and rice with some mango that needed to hang on the tree a week longer, we piled in the Van and headed off for the crater. The crater is an extinct volcano whose ridge is the highest elevation in Nakuru.

The drive up there is breath taking for 2 reasons. The first is the unbelievable view of Nakuru from that high up. You can not only see all of Nakuru at once, but the entire landscape of Lake Nakuru National Park as well. The second reason is the road. It is about as wide as the narrowest of our roads in the Village but with 4 to 6 foot ditches on either side. When another vehicle comes from the opposite direction you have approximately 4 inches left of road as you drive by the other car. Sometimes the mirrors touch but everyone stays on the road. You can imagine why.(Hey; I wonder if those 4 to 6 foot ditches would work in the Village?) ;-) That and rocks the size of volley balls, that are ever so often in the middle of the road. I have been to the top 2 or 3 times now, but have never seen it so green and clear.
One of the outstanding things about this part of Kenya is no matter where you drive you can see for at least 60 or 70 miles. Everything seems so big. There were lots of wild flowers blooming around the edge of the crater and with the incredibly blue sky it was spell binding. We had brought Simon and Lloyd with us and as soon as we hit the top, the three musketeers disappeared.

 Every once and a while I would see them seeing how close they could get to the edge of the 800 foot or so drop off, so I did what I used to do when I would take the chosen to Fall Creek Falls ….I looked somewhere else! The only other people at the top were some young locals who were out of school and having a blast poking fun at the Mozungus snapping pictures of everything in sight. Three of them consented to have their picture taken and ran away laughing after I showed it to them.

The wind was really blowing and the Eucalyptus trees were extremely fragrant so the whole experience made you want to just sit down and try to take it all in. After about an hour and a half, we began our descent and noticed a few High school age kids walking up the long, steep incline. Soon the few, turned into a few hundred and the road became very crowded. We had left just in time. It seemed as if all the young kids in Nakuru were going up to the crater. Half way down we spotted Evelyn, one of our girls so we stopped and said hello.

When they started to leave, one of Evelyn’s friends pointed out that our right front tire was almost flat. We managed to make it to the bottom of the hill and found a shady place to put on the spare.

After that, it was straight to a roadside goat grill, for some Ugalie, Katsumbali, and of course, goat meat, served with other goat parts. Ummm …. Goat intestines! No pumpkin pie, but you can't have everything. Then it’s back in the van and to try and get home for a little nap. Oh, I decided it was high time for me to start driving; so when we came to Nakuru, while George tried to score some Kampala bananas, I got in the driver seat. I noticed that everyone put their seat belts on for the first time. I made it home without incident except for the time I almost took a bora bora’s (bicycle taxi) driver’s elbow off. He pulled it in just at the right time, so all went well.

Tomorrow we meet with all the young people and the men. Please keep the prayers going we are more than half way through and still much to do. Happy Thanksgiving...we all have a lot to be thankful for.              All our love….your sent ones.

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