Day 29 - Maasai
Isn’t it funny how we don't think were cool in America unless we have a big house, nice cars and all the latest name brands of fashion. Well here you’re cool... if you have the least amount of stuff! Yes most people here still try to gather all kinds of things to look cool and rich. None the less in the midst of all this commotion, every now and again you would see something different amongst the crowd of people, someone who was wearing just a red kanga wrapped around them with some simple sandals and carrying a stick or knife.... a Maasai! They are known for living among the lions, way out in the bush. They don't work or wear normal clothes, they just live life. They raise their own livestock and build mud huts in the middle of nowhere. They enjoy not doing much of anything at all other than growing old, yet they seem to be the "coolest" people ever. You can tell just by the way they hold themselves high when they walk that they are comfortable in their own skin.
We don't often see them in the city, so we left the city and went into the bush guided by one of the base staff. A small group had already been to visit them and they were excited to know that a larger group of us were coming back. As soon as we arrived we were welcomed in. I don't really know how to sum up our experience there other to say it was amazing. We sat around on mats under the trees and talked through a translator while drinking chi. We talked to the midwives of the village and listened in awe of how they bring babies out of the womb with no "technology". We had many questions for them as they had for us and we exchanged knowledge and laughs.
In the misted of talking a little girl’s hand bumped my head as I was sitting down and suddenly she just stared in shock, she tried to be inconspicuous in touching it again but she couldn't help but whisper to the girls around her about my hair... in a matter of minuets I was unable to count the number of little hands on my head. It was then that I realized, being the fact that they all had shaved heads and rough hair, we brought something new! When I turned around to look they all pulled their hands away quite quickly wondering what my reaction would be, so I reached back and pulled my pony tail out, then I put it back in so they could see how I did it, then I took my pony tail out again, and handed it to one of the girls and motioned to her that she could try. I soon had a line of little girls ready to try their hand at putting my hair up. Sometimes it felt good, other times not so much, but we all had fun.
Day 30 - Teaching... well at least we thought we were.
Our team has found a way to connect with a school nearby and they welcomed us to teach there... so we did. I went with a group to teach about malaria to a class of 12-14 year olds. We weren't sure how much they would know about it so we decided to be very basic. Upon arriving we found there to be 130+ students all sitting under a tree waiting for us to begin. We got all of our things ready, introduced ourselves, played a game and then asked "Do any of you know what malaria is?" Many students raised their hands and once one was pointed out she stood up and said "Malaria is a sickness caused by the female anopheles." Even though their knowledge on it was beyond what we thought it would be we went along with our teaching, drama and song ending it with a powerful testimony and praying for all of them. And they loved every bit of it!
Day 31 & 32 - first one, but not for me.
It wasn't my turn at the clinic either day so I wasn't there, but some of my teammates got to witness their very first births. There were three births over a 24 hour period that some students were able to take part in and it has been very exciting. I was even able to go to the clinic one evening and hold the little boy, Joshua, who was the first baby of the school year. The mom was only 15 years old. I'm not sure of the details of the other deliveries but I know it won't be long before I'm writing about being part of my own.
Day 33 - same but different
Baking cakes back home is a bit of a hobby for me so when the chance came to make a birthday cake of some of the team members I jumped on it! I must say it would have made me feel a bit more at home, but with no recipes, very few basic ingredients and a fire for an oven... it was quite different. None the less I was determined. It took a lot of adding, mixing, licking and even burning this and that, but in the end we found a way! We may have had to cut off the burnt bottom and cover it in flowers to try to hide our mistakes... but like I said, we found a way!
I initially started this blog while working overseas to keep my supporters updated, then I did it a time as a required assignment during my midwifery school, but now I write but because I want to. So now I share my current journeys, in hopes that others can learn from them, or at the least have a good laugh.