Tag Archives: matatus

A More Light-Hearted Entry

I thought I would write a more light-hearted entry from my past two.  And I haven’t gotten to use a list in a while.  Here’s a compare and contrast of my life in the States to my life in Kenya:

  • I have running water… it comes from a magically invisible catchment tank somewhere and when that runs out, I get to scoop it from a giant bucket in my kitchen.
  • I take a shower every day… with no hot water, and no water pressure ever.
  • I cook on a gas stove… but one that many Americans would laugh at and might not even take with them on a camping trip.
  • I do my laundry… using three buckets, about 18 litres (I am lucky to be able to use so much), and my knuckles.
  • I can judge distances, measures and whatnot… using the Metric system.  Take that you Imperial [System] Dogs!
  • I have a drying machine, and it’s got its own Energy Star rating… it’s called the jua kali ya Mombasa (harsh sun of Mombasa).
  • I take public transportation… that very often fits about 28 people into a van smaller than a Ford E-150 Econoline.
  • We get into traffic jams… often caused by cows or people pushing over-sized wheelbarrows.  Yes, this even includes cities like Mombasa and Nairobi, and yes, even on the, “highways.”
  • I go to bed every night on a college dorm-quality mattress… underneath a chemically-treated mosquito net.
  • I fall asleep peacefully to the sounds of crickets chirping… and cats fighting, and bush-babies screeching, and Christian Revivals/Crusades/Really-Loud-Get-Togethers-That-Go-‘Til-5-AM
  • At which point I wake up in the morning… to the sound of the mosque’s call-to-prayer.
  • I worry about my safety at home… Will baboons attack me as I walk outside?  Will the monkeys break in and steal my food?  Is that green snake that just slithered into my ceiling poisonous (no, mouth and fangs were too small)?

I am sure this list could go on forever, but I also know my past few entries have been quite long, so I will keep this one short.  Hope you have enjoyed 🙂

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