Kenyan Philosophy: No money, no food, big problem

11 Commentsby   |  06.15.11  |  Kenya

So currently my new phrase has been,”I’m going to blog about this.” The only problem is that I forget what I vow to blog about. So one thing I’ve been meaning to share with you is the staple meals here in Kenya. Because money is so tight and food is quite scarce, the Kenyans eat just enough to sustain their lives. Sakuma wiki and oogali is the cheapest and most common meal in Kenya. Sakuma wiki are leaves cooked in spices. Point blank. Oogali is a cooked mixture of water and corn meal, which becomes a thick, mashable substance. It tastes like nothing (not there’s nothing that tastes like it; it literally tastes like nothing) and has the consistency of play dough. It is extremely filling but provides little to no nutriance. If you want to splurge, rice and beans are pretty common as well, but you will almost never find meat in a household. However, because hospitality is rampant here, whereever we visit they insist on feeding us and they ALWAYS provide a feast! Rice, oogali, beans, chicken, beef, avocados the size of softballs, bananas, oranges, pineapple (THE best pineapple in the world), vegetable soup, sakuma wiki, samosas, roasted potatoes, etc. They spare no expense and this breaks my heart because often they literally spend all they have to feed us. But it is boarderline rude to decline. Back to the meat, from what I’ve sampled, the meat is tough and chewy because the animals are as starved as their masters. All the animals look as if they are pure skeleton draped with hide. The staple drink is chai (a combination of water, milk, and tea). They have this at breakfast, mid morning, lunch, mid afternoon, dinner, and late night. Everyone LOVES chai!!

But enough of that, on to my week! The past couple of days have been full of a variety of activities involving fellowship with other primary schools, as well as work with the curriculm for the Sam’s Place children. After the stress of KDPL, on Monday we were allowed a break in the morning which we used to travel to Kisii to see the mines in which the famous Kisii stone is found. We trekked along the mines and watched some men hack out the stone while others carved out intricate animals, dishes, and nicknacks. Then we went to the shop where they washed, sanded, and painted the stone goods. It was amazing how quickly they could create such beautiful stone pieces! After this, we went to Sam’s Place and unloaded and updated laptops so that the students can not only become familiar with technology, but can also utilize programs that will enable their learning. Later, we went back to Kisii and stopped at Nakimat (the Walmart of Kenya) before eating dinner at the Blue Nile Hotel (a hotel is a restaurant in Kenya). We then went back to Sam’s Place and watched Prince of Egypt (with no sound of course!) with the children. On Tuesday we visited the Gift Academy, an extremely poor family that took in the orphans of the surrounding village and created an “academy.” They generously provided us with breakfast and lunch and the children performed so many beautiful songs for us. We were there for a total of 5 hours but one thing I’ve grown accustom to here in Kenya is that you are never rushed like you are in America. After our visit, we went back to Sam’s Place and continued planning the future curriculm and working with the computers. Today, Wednesday, has been my personal favorite, and one of the most rewarding, days so far. In the morning, we visited the Kuji School of the Deaf and talked with the Headmaster about how they operate their school for deaf children. We visited classrooms and observed teaching practices and student behavior (thank goodness my other two ACU partners are Psychology majors!). Then we were presented with a program of traditional African singing and dancing that was absolutely BEAUTIFUL!!! They wore matching costumes and even without sound were able to stay on beat! It was such a unique experience and I thank the Kuji school for providing us with such a wonderful welcome! After this visit we returned to Sam’s Place and prepared everything for the presentation. At 6 pm, we presented each child with a backpack of school supplies, a Sam’s Place hat, and a Sam’s Place T-shirt…and then we had a surprise! All of the children’s play clothes (they have one uniform that they wear daily, but in the late afternoons they are allowed to wear regular clothes) are very worn, with most having tears and holes in them. Thanks to Kenny (and I’m blanking on her last name but she’s a deaf woman from Virginia on our mission team) and her church for donating 2 boxes of clothes, each child was able pick out a pair of pants and 2 shirts. I don’t cry often and I’m not saying that I “cried” tonight but seeing the look of absolute wonder and gratitude for 3 items of gently used clothing was overwhelming. Sam’s Place has saved these children from terrible, terrible situations. Their stories would give you goose bumps and water your eyes (for those that are apathetic that is…for others expect to weep). And they have no hate, anger, or resentment towards anyone or anything at all. They are so sweet and so thankful and it continuously makes me put my life into perspective, recognizing the abundant blessings God has bestowed on every single one of us. It will be hard from this point forward to ever feel mistreated or ungrateful ever again. These children have no parents, no relatives that have any interest in keeping them, have no hearing, have continuously starved, every one of them has malaria, some have been abused, and none of them have ever been shown the love of Christ. I’ve been here for 10 days and I will not be coming back to America the same Ashley Carroll you all know.

 “And we know that in all things God works for the good of those who love Him, who have been called according to His purpose.” – Romans 8:28


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    1:07 pm, 11.25.17

    read this article why I share the feeling of poverty and hunger. Oh, God

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    1:08 pm, 11.25.17

    whether in that era it is that bad

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  10. Ben Grings
    2:36 pm, 01.25.22

    This philosophy is understandable to every person because without the necessary we simply cannot survive. But I respect the people of Africa, they don’t need wealth, they just need basic things to survive. In the civilized world, many people are stressed out of lack of money, power, or attention, and many people need the help of a psychologist, on this site you can find FAQ: Top questions – Calmerry ,here it is written about what problems people experience in the modern world, this greatly distinguishes us from those same Kenyans

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