Monday, June 21, 2010

Miss Laurel Jane May Visits Mombasa

June 18
Long overdue. Sorry about that those of you who have been waiting for me to write a blog. I know it’s been like a month. I can’t believe it. And believe me there has been no shortage of things to write about. It’s just that there’s usually something I’m more excited about doing than writing a blog. Like going our with my friends or working on Nuru stuff. I’ve been busy, and I have also been trying to work out a good way to access the internet from home. I have one of those little modems that plugs into the USB port, but the internet is slow and patchy, so it’s been frustrating trying to get my blog and the Nuru site updated.
My final excusefor not writing for so long is that my friend Laurie from Uganda/Australia was visiting for the last ten days or so. She dropped by Mombasa on her way back from a tour of Europe and intended to stay for a couple of nights, I guess she enjoyed herself, cause we finally had to push her on to the bus back to Uganda more than a week later. Just kidding Laurie. We loved having you here. Even though we were all crammed into one room and Bobo kept moving the fan off of you in the middle of the night.
I have to say we went a little crazy with Laurie here. We went out dancing a lot and enjoyed more than our share of Miraa and local brandy. For those who are new to my blog, Miraa is a highly stimulating plant grown by the Meru tribe. It comes in bunches of extremely bitter twigs which you have to chew. It makes you talk a lot, verbal diarrhea I believe it’s called, and you end up saying things like “Your name’s Ralph? Where I come from, that means vomit.” Right Laurie?
We also spent a bunch of time on the beach, evidence of which is available in my facebook photos. We went to the South Coast on the last day before Laurie’s departure. The South Coast has a whole bunch of really beautiful beaches, and it’s where all the big resorts and the majority of the white people can be found. Not us though. We stay in a one-room flat with no running water and a shared bathroom. And we love it! Or I do anyway. Anyway, this beach at the South Coast was really nice and they had a little bar with palm frond roofs and live music. Of course it started to rain as soon as we got there. We still went swimming though, cause the water was warmer than the air. It was definitely cold when we got out though. Bobo laughed at me for being cold cause I’ve said before that Kenyans don’t know what cold is. I maintain that they don’t. Incidentally, one of the interesting things about Laurie was that even though we share a lot of culture (which I’ll admit was refreshing conversation-wise – I was starting to miss having someone to regale with Friends and Calvin and Hobbes references) she has never really been anywhere cold. Uganda is cold for her. Now, I fully admit that Uganda is not warm compared to Kenya or Tanzania or Sudan (rain forest, misty hills and all that), but I defy anyone from Canada or even most of the northern US to call Uganda cold. In any case, we dried off and spent the rest of the evening drinking beer, listening to a local band, dancing, strolling on the beach and later watching the Australia soccer game. It was thoroughly enjoyable and honestly one of the things I was hoping to do more of while I was here. I know I’m here for Nuru and hopefully to visit my professor in Tanzania, but who says I can’t have a bit of a holiday too?
Laurie is working as a journalist for a small East African online journal run by Edirisa in Uganda. I helped her edit a couple of pieces and it really made me think about some of the things I’ve been wanting to write about in my blog. Things like the reactions to the world cup here in Kenya, Mr Joe Biden and his wife Jane’s visit to Kenya about a week ago, the upcoming referendum, etc. these are all things that I have come to know quite a bit about, and I’ve talked to lots of people and I have opinions. So I’m going to try to bring a few more of those things into my blog in the near future. Now that I have my laptop up and running, I think I’ll be better able to do that. After all, a blog is supposed to be a place to talk about things that are on your mind, and not just a record of things that happen to you on your holiday. And every day I think of something I could write about in a blog. So I promise it won’t be another month before I write again! I hope some of you will be interested in reading what I have to say. I’ll do my best to make it interesting!
Till then, enjoy your summers!


1 comment:

Laurel Jane May said...

All right...I'll this entry...Ralph! As in last night I chewed too much Miraa and I Ralphed...hahaaaaaaaaaaaa Miss you big woman, Mba ain't the same without youxxx