Friday, September 18, 2009

Final Days in Nairobi

Written: October 1, 2009: At the University of Nairobi, we also learned that all of the science students receive a cadaver for a year. This body is the student’s body to learn and experiment on. In addition, the university has a mortuary which they run to bring in money. It was a bit weird seeing a mortuary on a university campus but the biology majors in our group were a tad bit jealous of this.

After staying with our Riruta Satellite host families for more than a week, we had to say good bye. I exchanged gifts with my host family – educational materials and games for the girls, a notebook and nice pen for Peris, an address book and nice pen for my host mother, and an American t-shirt for my host father. I gave Mary, the house help a Swahili-English dictionary as she was always looking at mine and wants to learn English better. I also gave Peris, Judy, and Mary jewelry that my mother made and sent with me as gifts. In addition, I had gone out and had a bunch of the pictures that we had taken over the week printed and put them in an album for my family. They loved the photos as well as the gifts. They surprised me and gave me some gifts as well.

On the day we were to leave our host families, we all walked over to the house where we had been having class. All the host families and students were there and we enjoyed lunch together before our host families returned us to the Methodist Guesthouse, the place where they had originally picked us up from.

We spent a night in the Methodist Guest House to get organized before heading to the coast. We repacked our bags as we were only going to be able to bring one duffle bag each with us for the ten days that we would be spending on the coast.

The following morning, after breakfast, we put all of our luggage on a big orange bus and got ready for the eight hour drive to Mombasa. I was one of the first people on the bus so I decided to sit behind the door so that there would be no one in front of me. David Sperling, our history professor informed me that he wanted to sit with me as he is very tall and needed the extra leg room. He told me that I could move if I didn’t want to sit next to him but I told him that I didn’t mind.

During the bus ride, David and I had very interesting conversations. He told me more about the 40+ years that he has spent in Kenya and explained things that we saw on the drive. in addition, he was very interested in hearing about my experiences in Ghana and my reasons for going there and dedicating so much time and effort to the orphanage there. I explained to him how much luck played in this event. It made me think about how lucky I was to go to Ghana and how much luck it took to be placed at Christ Orphanage. We talked about the ways in which my experiences in Ghana have changed my life and David noted that it was probably due to these experiences that I am so mature.

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