Life Update: List Format

Ok, so I know I have been absent for a while here. I was in Nairobi, where believe it or not, for reasons including scheduling and sessions and a ill-thought-out conference location, had slightly less access to the internet, or rather, at least not access conducive to blog writing. So here are some updates on life in Kenya, list formatted of course abating the need for transitions and eliminating any preconceived sense of implied relationship between the various thoughts with two exceptions: many of them came to me today while gardening; some of the thoughts may be listed in such a chronological order that a subtle wittiness would be derived… hopefully. Enjoy!

  • Kenyan gardening is quite the different experience from what I was raised to perceive as gardening. It involves significantly more sweeping of dirt.
  • I spent today sweeping dirt. Admittedly it makes the dirt look nicer, and admittedly the actual action was undertaken as a form of raking to filter out leafy particulates from dusty particulates, but honestly it was still sweeping dirt.
  • Kenyans have a fear of snakes. A deeply rooted fear. I don’t know if it’s a “Satan came in the form of a snake,” fear, or a, “Snakes are poisonous and kill children,” fear, or the much more pressing, “Kenyans get taken up into trees by snakes,” fear, but no matter the case, there must be at least two feet of dirt between a house and the nearest grass. The dirt must be swept. I have the cleanest looking snake moat in kenya.
  • I am coming more and more to the understanding that Peace Corps is all about you being happy with yourself for two years in a foreign country. End of story. You don’t need to save the world. You don’t need to build an orphanage or a library. You don’t need to miraculously solve a country’s rampant corruption. You just need to be happy.
  • If having a Super Nintendo emulator and compatible game controllers for my computer makes me happy so be it. I don’t need to justify it to anyone. So there šŸ˜›
  • I like to read, a lot. Even more than I thought, and I already knew I liked to read.
  • Project Gutenberg is my new friend.
  • I think Corporate-Social responsibility is critical to making humanity better. I don’t care if it’s kenya, or america or the moon, we need to realign our thinking on a grand scale. Capitalism doesn’t need to die, but it certainly needs to evolve and the evolution doesn’t need to include government control.
  • Development work is tricky. I don’t want to say it doesn’t work, but I am not going to say it’s working either. It needs to evolve as well.
  • After four months of conforming to Kenyan propriety standards, I still feel most comfortable wearing shorts and a t-shirt in this weather. I would even say it puts me in a better mental state, and thus makes me more productive.
  • I wear bright pink flip flops. So do about 7 out 10 other Kenyans. The other kenyans wear either bright green, orange or blue flip flops. To answer your question, no, they don’t really come in different colours.
  • I also have a hideously colored plaid umbrella. Guess what it goes really well with (hint: see above).
  • I also have a pair of the bright green flip flops. I am trying to break them in and make them as comfortable as my pink ones. But honestly, there’s no rush.
  • Have I already mentioned I am trying to amass Kenya’s largest Hawaiian Shirt wardrobe? Combine that with the past three or four statements. Did I blow your mind, or create a mental image you just can’t get out of your head?
  • I am slowly trying to show my neighbors I am not lazy.
  • My neighbors have every reason to think I am lazy. Mostly because I have been the laziest I have ever been in my life, and am out of shape, and tire even more easily than I ever have before.
  • I played with a wind scorpion today. Don’t worry, I was wearing gloves.
  • I think I may have witnessed millipede intercourse. For ten minutes. All I have to say is that it adds a whole new level to the concept of “mounting.” One millipede rode around on top of the other for the entire time I was watching it.
  • Yes, my life is boring enough that the previous statement is completely true.
  • The past three statements are continuing testament to the fact that I am becoming an amateur entomologist.
  • I also spent about five minutes attempting to explain in simplified english the concept of scientific naming of insects, all so that I could tell David my neighbor that the wind scorpions fear light and that this distinguishing trait is even its scientific classification: solifugae.
  • The weather in mombasa is getting simply quite pleasant. Humidity is going down a bit in the afternoons, and the temperature is coming down as well. Every day I believe more and more that the next few months really will be nice.
  • I was with what can only be described as the most violent lufa ever: a natural fiber sponge. I found it just a few weeks ago. May have mentioned it. It does wonders for the skin after a day out in Mombasa.
  • I also “clean” my feet using a pumice stone. I don’t know what is harder: the soles of my feet or the pumice stone.
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3 Comments

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3 responses to “Life Update: List Format

  1. Andrew

    Hey Jon,

    When will we see your solifugae pet pictures?

    Andy

  2. kim

    So what did you do in Nairobi?

  3. Owen

    Could you team up with an etymologist, augmenting his powers with your entomologist skills, to create the ultimate Confusingly Named Duo?