Seeing Nairobi through New Eyes.

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This post has been way overdue…but I never was able to reflect and tell you all about the 2 weeks that my friends Andrea and Katherine jumped, head-first, into Kenya! We decided to all stay at my friend Brenda’s place, who runs the Goldmines Foundation. The girls were already planning to stay with her and when I started feeling like I wouldn’t get to see them as much as I’d hoped, since Brenda had just recently moved to the other side of Kibera, she was so generous and sweet to open her home to me as well. Brenda is a dear friend and amazing cook, plus it was fun to discover a new side of town and play with her 2 beautiful kids, Randy and Jannelle.

It’s hard for me to summarize the 2 weeks with my friends because we packed so much in. I had a list in my head, and actually one on paper, of things I wanted to show them and so we literally were checking things off a list the whole time-haha! Monkey park, Mathare, visiting Grace, coming to Art from Below, eating scones and drinking yogurt were all on that list, plus much more. Some things, like Matatu riding, were probably overdone, but unlike where i live in Jamhuri, at Brenda’s you actually can’t get a bus and so our only option was the crazy vans!

      Katherine had been in Uganda the year before and Andrea was experiencing her first trip to Africa trip, and both gave fresh insight as I heard and saw their reactions and thoughts about the culture, people, and life here. They made a blog just for this trip so you can also check this out to hear their reflections first-hand: http://liveloveafrica.blogspot.com/feeds/posts/default .

         I was also amused by my friends here in Kenya because I think they viewed my friends and I as coming from different cultures or something, though we really aren’t. But more than once I’d here things like “Kaylie, you talk with a Kenyan accent”, “Well, Kaylie’s Kenyan”, “Don’t eat the food Kaylie’s eating off the street” or “Kaylie can walk in Kibera but it’s not safe for Katherine and Andrea”. Made me feel warm and fuzzy, but it’s also funny because the culture I have grown in is obviously not Kenyan, and very much American. But truly they adjusted so well, without a phone, they rode matatus by themselves, ate cow intestines, had loads of chai, walked tons, stood up to the touts who weren’t giving their change, ect…and thats just in 2 weeks! Imagine if they had been here for longer- welp, then they’d be borderline Kenyan I think!

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