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field work, home work, raining fish!

KENYA | Saturday, 3 October 2009 | Views [1586] | Comments [1]

karibu all!

loads to tell ya,

tuesday was fatastic. i went into the fields to work with the guardians. most had no shoes, one woman had only 1 of shoe, they were all in skirts. i showed up in pants and boots...a little overdressed id say. anyway they welcomed me by placing what they call a ho (a peice of wood w/a hooked metal peice on the end, tiny) in my hand and loaded a hand full of seeds in the other hand. we bent down and i planted two rows of maize along side these beautiful guardians. they sure loved to see a mzungu (white person) work. and they were so grateful to get the seeds in the eart....wouldnt you know, that night there was a huge storm bringing rain...glorious sprouting soon to occur im sure.

thursday was the most difficult day i have faced so far. we did home visits. the children show up to school in uniforms and smiles upon their faces. although you know theyre probably hungry, theyre happy to be there. but these images hide the truth. when i went to see their huts i could not believe it was true. the first home by foot was over 3 kilometers on a thick muddy path, no more will i complain about walking. when we arrived at the hut, there was a mom with two of the children present. the hut was a mud hut which was falling apart. the 4 of us barely fit inside the 8 by 8 ft home which was shared by the 7 kids (all under age 7) and two parents. no blanket or bed. just 4 chairs and a sheet hung to separate the parents sleep side from the kids. the parent both mentally a bit gone. how can 7 kids fit in an 8 ft by 4 ft space? now i realize this world is not overpopulated, we just feel the desire to have so much space to ourselves that feel we are running out of room...so wrong.

the next home we found 3 kids approx age 4,6,7 alone in a hut. we opened the door to see a jiko (a fire pot run with charcoal and wood) burning heavely inside. i was standing outside the door and my eyes were burning i could barely breathe. i could not believe these children were preparing food in this smoky area that was such a lung hazard, and they were so young. when i saw what they were cooking i wanted to grab it and throw it in the forest so they couldnt have it. would it cause more harm than good? i had no idea. there were fish piled in a stack on the floor no refrigeration obviously which means the fermenting had probably taken case and disease was most likely present. i just hoped they would know to cook it for a long time to be sure.

this is when i realized POVERTY DOES NOT EXIST IN AMERICA!!!!!!!!

yesterday i attended a wake (funeral viewing) for a woman who was a head of a child compassion center. this was an amazing but strang experience. strange because i did no know her yet i still was overwhelmed with emotion at seeing the love in the room. they welcomed the body into the church by yelling and waving arms to chase the evil spirits from her body. once in the church, drums and shakers were used to bring force peace and harmony. their voices were magical. the children she helped save at one point circled the body and performed a small dance and large singing production praising her life. this was breathtaking. they really rejoiced this life gone and their voice rung out in pure raw emotional love and compassion. i dont like funeral but i did enjoy this experience. i was told she would then be taken to her home where for the rest of the evening there would be a partylike scene with ceremony and scripture reading until early morning when she would be taken to the earth for burial. what an amazing departure for a loved one.

anyway i just arrived in kisumu after a crazy experience on the matutu (mini van fitted for 15 people) we crammed 24 people in and were stopped by the police who wanted us all in seatbelts which only 1/2 worked. they arrested the driver for lackin safety and we were shoved in a bus for the rest of the way. when we arrived i sat on the bus till they unloaded, open buckets of mini fish were being brought down from the roof and my open window allowed a few to fall and hit my shoulder,,,i wanted to gag but held it back due to cultural significance of food...i then hopped on a tuktuk which is a small cart enclosure that goes tops 40kmh. im here relaxing at present taking a breath....read the following journal for the big surprize!!!!

kena achieng

Tags: children, farm, food, inspiration, kids, land, love, poverty, seeds

 

Comments

1

Just WOW. Courageous Sister, Blessed Sister, Getting Wiser Sister, Beautiful Sister. Poverty of a different nature exists in America, poverty of the spirit. You are closer to the heart of living true life there, than many are here. That is all changing however, the Spiritual evolution of the All of humanity belonging to the One that is God that is Love, is upon us! *sings* One heart, One love, give thanks and praise to Ja ja and we will see the light!

  Genevieve Nov 13, 2009 3:25 PM

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