Thursday, March 30, 2006

A matter of time.

I was to be right back after my last post. I guess I forgot to say that I would be right back -before the end of March! I got the newspaper I was looking for before it was "recycled", read the article, but do I say! Thanks to the writer, Ben Singer, and thanks to you dear reader. I hope to keep the Kenyan villager alive till the end of me. Karibu for the ride...

For a long time now, my posts have been few and for apart. Here in the village, the Internet is not as easily available as out there. In Nyahururu town, there are only four places I can access the net; Three cyber-cafe and the local post office. I don't know how the cafes link up but the post office uses the VSAT things. Yes, those things. The services at the cafes are fair but sometimes can be so slow. there are times it takes like ten minutes to load, five minutes to sign in and another ten minutes to load the post page(or whatever its called). Add that to the time it takes to type a post and you are talking about at least 45 minutes (Im not very good at typing -I use one finger from each hand). The computers at the post office are no better. Add the poor attitude of staff there and you are in real trouble. The last time I was there, the comps were very slow. I tried to get someone to assist but they all seemed to be busy (I mean the computer literate ones). When one of the ladies became available, I had to wait until she was through with her obviously delicious cup of Kenyan tea! Of course I just walked out. I wonder why people complain when the government says that it will retrench these guys!

Sometimes I get carried away. What I ment to say is that the cyber-cafes have greatly improved their services and the internet speed is, well, fair. In now clicking away in my favourite one called clicks. They play nice background music (although some clients are louder than the music) but the privacy rating is zero. You can see guys craning their necks trying to see what other clients are doing online, especially the ladies -not to say the ladies are any more polite! Sorry, got carried away again! I just want to say that I hope to post at least twice every week, subject to availability of funds(as the government is so fond of saying). See you soon, ama?

Thursday, March 16, 2006

On cloud nine!

I've just returned from the bush. Going through my new mail, I learn that this blog was featured in the Daily Nation, Kenya's leading newspaper and I missed it (some villages see only the Sunday paper, the Kiswahili one- Taifa Jumapili! I now have to start looking for tuesday's copy hoping that snot all copies have been used to wrap meat at the butcher's or used for some other purpose I don't want to mention here... ok, some people here still dont understand why they should buy toilet paper while theybdon't need the old newspaper any more! "You just splash a few drops of water on the paper and its good to go!
Allow me to get the paper and then I'll be right back...
Before I go, thanks for the comments.

Tuesday, March 07, 2006

Church affairs

Nyahururu people are deeply religious. There are like 1001 Christian denominations (sometimes read sects), tradationalists, Muslims and other crazy groups which you cant place in any of the above categories. Walk around the streets between 1.00pm and 2.00pm and you would be forgiven to think that the small town was one big worship centre. There are worshippers in every building and street corner, screaming hoarsely into hapless microphones and amplifying the chaos over booming loudspeakers- you want to cork your ears! I think it's OK for people to worship in their own way, but they should also let others worship in their own way. I like to worship in a calm, serene envilonment believing that God listens even when we don't shout out to him!
Rumour has it that the Nation recentry ran a story about this new 'sect' whose ordained 'priests' (former Roman Catholic priests) are allowed to marry. This is a big deal to the villagers because priests (not pastors) are not allowed to marry. Pope Benedict the 16th recently signed a document saying that his priests will not be allowed to marry; that they should remain celibate for life. I am a catholic by virtue of birth but I think the pope and his followers are just burying their heads in the sand. Did someone ask why? I don't know about the rest of the world but the priests who serve here have always been the he-goats of the village- sleeping around right, left and centre. They don't seem to mind the age, marital status, class or religion of the women they go out with. By age, I mean they sleep around with old women all the way to underage girls. The number of babies and abortions around is evidence enough and also proves that these village bulls don't even use protection! The popular 'trust' condoms still cost KShs.10.00 for a pack of three (around 21 condoms for an American dollar)!
But remember the Catholic church teaches that the use of contraceptives is wrong, of course.
They also say here in the village that God helps those who help themselves...

Monday, March 06, 2006

Resolutions update...

I had forgotten about the resolutions made at the beginning of the year. Luckily I made only three: here's an update...
1. To stop smoking: I have dropped from ten sticks a day to only one. I usually take it in the evening after work except when in the company of my wife or in public.
2. To stop drinking: I have managed to keep off the bottle since January and this feels good! However I sometimes take the occasional glass of home-made fruit punch after dinner AT HOME. I brew the stuff and boy, is it potent or is it potent! My wife will not allow me to take more than a glass at a time and I am happy to oblige. I still frequent pubs but wont take any alcohol. My friends think Im loosing it but I don't care.
3. To be faithful: I have not broken this resolution and have no intention of doing so. It has not been easy, I can tell you (they say I look good, but do I say!). Dear God, help me to keep this resolution- and to you ladies out there, help me too by keeping off!
I wonder how you are doing with your resolutions?

Thursday, March 02, 2006

Stop Press!

What's this we are hearing about the government shutting down the Standard Newspapers and KTN? I think this is crazy! I am a daily reader of the Standard And I really enjoy reading their scathing and cutting edge stories, commentaries and editorials. OK, sometimes they overdo it... other times you wonder whether they are not being instructed to write these things... but I dont think this is enough reason to shut them down. About KTN, I can't say anything because here in the village, the few lucky people with TVs only receive the government owned KBC.

Its really pathetic!

Home town..

I am now living in Core-site estate, Nyahururu - a small town in central Kenya. The town is dusty like hell in the dry season but lovely and very green in the rainy season. The Aberdare ranges lie to the west and southwest in magnificent slumber while Nakuru is 85 Kilometers away to the east. The most popular attraction around is Thomson Falls, a 75 meter (246.06 feet) water cascade just 15 minutes away on foot. The falls, locally called Kirurumo are a sight to behold. Sitting at the bottom of the falls on a sunny Sunday afternoon, sipping some exotic tropical fruit juice, and my lovely lady by my side is pure heavenly bliss….During the rainy season, the falls roars like thunder as the water crushes on the rocks far below. You don’t want to be down there, at the bottom – its not just scary, it’s dangerous! From a safe distance though, it’s a bewitching, sight that can never be forgotten. If you ever happen to be around, get In touch with me and I will take you there. You won’t regret.

Hi everyone, I am back.

Thank you for all your comments and good wishes for my new business.

Business is good, much better than expected. Allow me to start from where I left off in the last post….

I sold my cow to a local prominent farmer for KShs. 20,000. With this cash I was able to buy 15 goats from Maasai herdsmen driven from their rift valley grazing fields to the highlands by severe famine. Each of the goats cost KShs.800. I took the animals home to Ol’Joro-orok where there’s plenty of food. After a long spell of dry weather, the rains are here. The pastures are quickly turning from scorched red to lush green and the price of goats (and other livestock too) has risen dramatically. Today, I sold all the goats for KShs.1,850 each! If that is not good business, tell me what is!