Monthly Archives: June 2012

Going to the Beach!

The link is to a video I took on Mombasa beach.  I have other videos plus some of Pirates beach.  I will try to upload some, but it takes awhile so I doubt I will upload any long videos.  Y’all will have to wait until I get back to see those.

An update on things… I am feeling 100% better and back to normal.  I have not been to school since I think Tuesday, on Bro Maricky’s orders.  I will return to teaching and coaching Monday.  It has been nice to relax and sleep a bit extra every day.  I will try to take a video of the new house I am living at to give everyone a picture of that.  I am also going to convince Bro Ken, Dancun or Julius Maingi to go to Nairobi National Park this weekend as I have yet to make it there.  Next week I will talk to Daniel about going to Iten… time is running out as I have only three weeks left in Kenya!  If I make it to the park I will be sure to take lots of photos… I am hoping by SUnday I can have many photos uploaded on here from past stuff, so be sure to check previous posts for new pics.  That is all for now, tonight I’m going to get some brandy to enjoy tomorrow with dinner 🙂


Moved To Makadara

The Marianists’ houses are getting pretty full these days.  I have been here and Bro. Mike Cochran just came two days ago.  Today we welcome to teachers coming from Spain.  Because of this increase, I have moved to the Regional House in Makadara.  It is a much bigger and is situated next to a high school.  This school has a large grounds and holds a standard size track.  This will allow me to start running more frequently once I know I am fully recovered from being sick.  I have regained my appetite for food and don’t feel nausea when I move around too fast.  Today Bro Maricky was supposed to come pick me up and do who knows what, but he has not arrived and it is now 10 am.  He may not arrive until the afternoon so I will do laundry and try to upload some pics for y’all to see.


Kenya Olympic Trials

Today I went to Nyayo Stadium.  It is not far from South B, but we took a matatu to get there.  When we entered the stadium they had just started the women’s 5k.  We made our way around the stadium to sit on the back stretch, beginning of the final curve.  I spotted Bro Colm and Bro Elvis and I went down to talk to him.  After chatting with him we went back to the stands to watch the rest of the races.  I captured video of all the races, but I doubt I will upload them as it would take me a coon’s age to do so.  The races were exciting.  The men’s steeple featured Brimin Kipruto and Ezekiel Kemboi.  Kemboi put on a show as he sat near the back and by the home stretch was vying for the win.  Once he knew he would place top two, he let off the speed and finished second.  At the Kenya Trials, the top 2 automatically make the Olympic team and the third spot is decided by Athletics Kenya.  It was fun to see many of the top Kenyans I have read about competing right before me.  During the men’s 5k a man who was not supposed to be in the race toed the line.  Before the race the officials even tried to get him off the track.  He insisted and they let him start.  This man was clearly not an elite runner.  He was hefty looking and had a belly on him.  By the time the leaders finished he was lapped six or seven times!  He was entertaining and the crowd loved his antics, even the announcer was playing along with him.  At the US Trials if someone tried to do this, the meet officials would be going nuts.  After the races were finished I sought out the famous coach Renato Canova.  I had spotted him midway through the meet and wasn’t leaving unless I talked to him.  He is one of my biggest heroes!  I met up with him on the infield and started chatting with him.  His english is rather broken and sometimes it is hard to follow him, but nonetheless, I was able to concentrate and follow what he was saying.  I exchanged email addresses with him and even talked about returning to Kenya to work with him.  How amazing would that be!?  This is a coach of world and olympic champions and world record holders!

 

 

On the way out of the stadium we met up with Bro Dan and he introduced me to some of the athletes he knows.  He spent some time in Iten, so he is friends with some of the elites he met while there.  It was amazing to see someone like Augustine Choge seeing Bro Dan and flagging him down to say hi, then getting to chat with him.  I hope a trip to Iten is worked out and Bro Dan says we will spend time with many of the elites he knows living there.


Trip to Mombasa

I meant to publish this last night.  Also, I doubt I will post as many pics or videos as they take awhile to upload since our internet is slow.  Be sure to check back to past posts as I will add pics when I have a chance

Last weekend I went to Mombasa and stayed with Brother Elvis’s family.  I had lots of fun, except for the bombardment of mosquitos.  The first day we went to some of the markets.  It is pretty cool.  You have kiosk after kiosk filled with different goods and people walking everywhere.  When you enter the one market you are surrounded by people and kiosks.  The sky is covered with sheets, so it is rather dark in there.  The other market was much more open.  We visited Ft. Jesus after this.  This fort was built by the Portuguese and was taken over by the Arabs.  Eventually falling into the hands of the British.  It was carved out of the rock and took a long time to finish because of this.  Later in the evening we went to Mombasa beach.  This beach is very relaxed, not many people.  That night we went to a night club.  I had a gin and tonic, then switched to Johnny Walker Black Label on the rocks.  Scott Koressel would be proud.  We saw a dancing/acrobatics show before we went to the dance floor.  We finally left the club at 4:30… I was extremely tired at this point.

The next day we went to Pirates beach.  This beach was very crowded as most of the Kenyans go to this one.  The waves at this beach were also bigger and it was lots of fun swimming through these.  On Monday we went to a Haller Park and saw giraffes, crocodiles, various snakes and lizards, sort of saw hippos (they were under the water), various antelopes, a couple tortoises, and some monkeys.  Then we went to a park along the ocean before we left.

We arrived in Nairobi Tuesday morning and I went to school that day.  On the way home we were stopped in Mukuru by a truck and as we waited for it to get out of the way we saw the start of a fight.  A man started yelling at two men walking and eventually the one was being held by his shirt.  Once the truck had moved out of the way, people from the crowd directed us through the crowd that was gathering to make room to beat the man.  as we drove by the men, The one holding him by the shirt started slapping him in the face.  This made the other man very heated and punches started flying.  By the time we were past them, I could see form the back window the man being punched and kicked.  Even people from the crowd not involved started throwing punches and kicks.  The brothers said these people will join as they use it to real ease anger and stress.  They also said it would not surprise them if he was beaten until he couldn’t move or until he was dead.  Later I asked some of the children what they thought was the reason and they said most likely it was drug related.  definitely a crazy experience.  It makes me think back to when we hit the child with the car and that things could have easily elevated to the worse.  Because we took the child and sought him care there was no grudge.  There was actually a man then that helped control the crowd.  I think Bro Julius said he is a drunk, but nonetheless he is a good man.  Anyway, those are some interesting experiences I’ve had.

Tomorrow is the finals for the Kenya Olympic Trials.  I will be going grant it I feel better.  I woke up today with a headache and feeling very weak.  I talked to Bro Colm last night and he said events start at 10:3o and he will be there.  Hopefully I will run into him.  Bro Dan will be done with class  by 12:30 so He will meet me at the stadium and I think one of the other brothers will go with me for the beginning of the meet.  I will take pics and videos while I’m there… hopefully I don’t get in trouble as they might not want things filmed. Luckily my camera does not look like a normal camera and they might not realize what it is.


Off to Mombasa

I am off to Mombasa today.  Leaving in the next couple hours.  I have been very busy and tired and have not had much time to write on here.  I have some photos and videos to post but don’t have the time to upload them right now.  I will also have more time later to write about what’s been going on since my last post.  I will return Tuesday morning and I’m sure I’ll have plenty of pictures and videos of the coastal city.  I’ll be going with Brother Elvis and staying with his family.  We’ll have opportunities to go to the beach, to shows, and to night clubs.  Should be a fun time…. they say Mombasa is the Las Vegas of Kenya 🙂  Well, until next week, See You!


Uhuru Park

Yesterday, after lunch, Brother Elvis and I took public (what taking a bus is called) to city center. We walked a boat load!  Perhaps 4 miles worth of walking.  We saw all sorts of sections of the city. We walked through market places, through kiosks, a big repair section for matatus, and through a park next to parliament called Uhuru Park.  Here are some pictures of the park plus one of the cathedral.  I have a couple videos but i will upload them later.


Tusker, Tusker, Tusker

What a week…

On wednesday night I went to bed 1-2 hours early (8pm) and woke up at 6:30.  I was extremely tired.  I have begun to have more regular practice for athletics.  It is funny how one day a student will show up, but the next they won’t.  We run about 3 miles.  Most of the students will run 1-3 laps around the field with me (the lap around the field is not 400m) and then rest for a few laps.  I do have a few that will run the whole way with me.  I tell them to run comfortably and if they need a rest to do so.  Yesterday I went out for the first break and ran 3 miles then ran another 3 during athletics practice.  This along with my PE classes was very tiring!  We are “slashing” the grass around the field because it was very high and is tiring to run through.  We were able to finish about 1/4-1/3 on Wednesday during two of my PE classes.  I will be sure to take a picture of the slashers and of the path in the grass to post on here.  Today is a national holiday.  We are celebrating Kenya’s Independence and therefore have no school.  It is 11:45 am here and I have yet to do anything but work on catching up with me PE490 school work and catch up with running news and US news.  I feel like I have wasted the day away and it isn’t even afternoon yet!  Many of those my age in the US might be waking up right now… shout out to Albaro who probably won’t wake up until 2-3 pm.  Either today or tomorrow will be a trip to Nairobi National Park.  I am excited to see the animals in the wild.  So far I have only seen some birds and such around the city… nothing too exotic yet.

Now on to the title of this post.  Last night for dinner the Brothers and I enjoyed some spirits.  I had some Tusker, a Kenyan lager.  It is good, but after having some German brew it does not hit the top of the charts.  It is still good though.  Next time I go to the store I told Brother JP I will look for a something like scotch or whiskey.  I have yet to spend much money here.  Since I am mostly at home or at the school I don’t have many opportunities to spend much money.  The Brothers are now finished with their retreat and other events so I will probably start doing a lot of traveling during the weekends.  Brother Daniel and I will visit Iten and Brother Colm in the next week or two and Brother Elvis and I have been discussing a visit to Mombassa.  There will be other places to visit but I first want to visit these two, then think about other places.

I don’t think I shared my experience from the drive home the other day.  We we just exiting Mukuru and we say a motorbike and a body laying in the street.  In the ditch along the side of the road was an SUV.  It must have just happened before we entered the street and passed by the matatus that blocked that view because no one was around the scene yet.  Within a few seconds people had rushed to the man laying in the street.  We were “fortunate to be the first vehicle to pass through there because there would be a traffic jam and the second SUV of brothers had to turn around and take another route.  As we passed, people in the crowd began to pick the man up.  In Kenya the cars are like the British ones.  Therefore, I was on the side of the accident.  I could see blood coming from the back of the man’s head and blood on the tarmac.  All I could assess from the situation was the man was dead.  If he was alive, he was in critical condition and the people moving him might make it worse if he had a neck or back injury.  In Kenya the people in the street don’t think of something like that.  We had to slow down because of the large number of people now in the street.  The man form the SUV came up to my window and told us to stop and take him to the hospital.  Brother JP basically said “heck no.  it is your responsibility.”  It was good we did not get involved as we could have gain responsibility in the situation.  Sometimes it stinks to not do anything or to help someone, but it could become a nightmare for you if you do.

Well, lunch will be served soon and I don’t want to miss that.  Hope everyone is enjoying the beginning of their summers and contact me if you want to chat (we will have to plan for it as I am usually busy during the day).

Hakuna Matata