Dadaab Part 1 – Ifo Camp (29/9/11)
Sep29

Dadaab Part 1 – Ifo Camp (29/9/11)

Imagine, if you will, Spokane WA, or Canberra ACT – around 450,000 people. Imagine it without paved streets, with sand and gorse as far as the eye can see.  Imagine it without a source of water – with water tanks filled by tankers and your home supplied by filling containers.  Imagine that nothing will grow there, and that when food comes your means of obtaining it is by ration card.  Imagine that you live in a tent, or in...

Read More
Blessed are those who mourn (23/9/11)
Sep22

Blessed are those who mourn (23/9/11)

I preached today at the Moffat chapel service on Matthew 5:4, “Blessed are those who mourn, for they shall be comforted.” I signed up to speak on this verse about two months ago as a part of the regular roster of staff preaching in chapel.  In the month following: -My parents’ divorce was finalised -There was a major fire in a Nairobi slum, with over 100 burned to death, including two cousins of a friend of ours, who...

Read More
Freedom (20/9/11)
Sep20

Freedom (20/9/11)

Emer, our new diabetic, disappeared yesterday. Jennifer and the team had sat down with the family in the afternoon to talk with them – they had a 20,000KSh ($200) bill, of which they were going to pay 15,000 and our Needy Children’s Fund was going to cover the rest.  And then, incredibly, a friend of ours at home who has a special place in her heart for children with diabetes had offered to pay for all of Emer’s...

Read More
Tea (19/9/11)
Sep19

Tea (19/9/11)

It’s my birthday in a few days and so Mardi planned a surprise outing for the family to go and have lunch and a tour at a local tea farm in Limuru, Kiambethu Tea Farm. In a word, it was gorgeous.  More than 100 years of family tradition (English, originally) in making black tea, including building the local Anglican church which has the distinction of being the burial place of the eminent archaeologist Dr Louis Leakey and his...

Read More
Resource-poor excellence (17/9/11)
Sep16

Resource-poor excellence (17/9/11)

Yesterday I met a sweet 4 1/2 year old girl named Emer – 4 days ago she was a healthy little girl with no problems about 100km from here.  Then she started to get thirsty, and lose weight, and then she collapsed. A local clinic checked her blood sugar and quickly recognised she had diabetes.  They gave her an insulin injection, some IV fluids to start to treat her dehydration, and told the parents that they needed to bring her...

Read More
Little scars (13/9/11)
Sep13

Little scars (13/9/11)

For over 2 months, we have been watching baby Shunetra grow. Although Shunetra wasn’t that premature, she was born very, very small for how long she’d been growing – under 1kg at birth.  She had a tenuous but determined hold on life – another one of our 2-steps-forward, 1.9-steps-back kind of babies. We like babies to gain at least 20 grams a day when they’re in the nursery – Shunetra took about a...

Read More
Best bits (10/9/11)
Sep10

Best bits (10/9/11)

Highlights of my week: – Going to the movies as a family today – we saw Mr Popper’s Penguins.  After Liam stopped crying because the closeup of “Loudy” freaked the snot out of him, we had a wonderful time as the only people in a real, live movie theatre.  Precious.* – Finding that the Nakumatt has, in the bakery section, honest-to-goodness sausage rolls, chicken pies and pepper steak pies.  As a kid...

Read More
Mwalimu (9/9/11)
Sep09

Mwalimu (9/9/11)

I started teaching my Spiritual Formation class last week at Moffatt, and it’s been great so far. Yesterday I had my first scheduled ‘Office Hours’, for students to ask questions about their homework or reading assignments.  All 19 of the first year students are high school grads, for whom English is their 2nd, 3rd, or 4th language.  In my class (as in all of Moffatt’s classes), all of the required reading...

Read More
Preschool and Playdough (8/9/11)
Sep08

Preschool and Playdough (8/9/11)

Here in the northern hemisphere – oh wait, we’re still technically south of the equator – the school year runs from September to June.  We are blessed to be living right next door to the largest boarding school for missionary kids on the continent of Africa.  Rift Valley Academy (RVA) teaches children from Kindergarten (Aus: Reception) to year 12, and its graduates end up sprinkled around the globe via institutions...

Read More
Satellites and spaceships (6/9/11)
Sep06

Satellites and spaceships (6/9/11)

Kijabe is at around 7500 feet elevation, about half way up the Rift Valley escarpment. We look down into the Rift Valley, and you can see for miles. Breaking up the monotony of the valley floor are the shiny roofs of Government-built camps for the people displaced by the 2007 violence, trees, the odd giraffe, Mt Longonot, and two absolutely ginormous satellite dishes. Riley loves these satellite dishes. Every time she sees them she...

Read More