May was a whirlwind month for me, in part because I was finishing up my final semester of grad school and in part because we were traveling every weekend. Then, of course, there was that looming trip to East Africa to plan for…
Which brings me to the here and now. It’s a lovely, sunny day in Nairobi and rooming with a British engineer, even for only a few days, already has me saying things like “it’s a wee bit wonky” and “do you fancy a drink?”. Louisa, the Brit, leaves in a few days and will soon be replaced by an American, so I’m sure the expiration date for these phrases is coming up soon.
I’ve reunited with all the KDI Kenya staff and enjoyed my first few versions of “How Are You”, as sung by Kiberan children. Perhaps the coolest part about returning to Nairobi is seeing the project that I worked on last summer in it’s nearly-completed form.
Before we get to that stuff, though, I want to share just a few pictures from some recent excursions. The Auerbach clan was busy graduating in May – Eric with his second masters and Ben with a PhD. Then of course there was me with my (first) masters and Ben’s wife, Sam, graduated with her NP. To celebrate, we all made our way to Montreal to eat and explore.
And now for the story about getting to Kenya… Upon trying to check into my flight on KLM, I realized that I had booked my flight out of JFK for Thursday, May 30, at 11pm. However, I booked a flight from Chicago to New York to catch this flight on Wednesday, May 29, in the afternoon. That meant I had a full day and a half to bum around New York. This was annoying in that I really could have used that extra day at home; nonetheless, I enjoyed my day in New York fitting in some last minute exercise prior to sitting in a narrow airplane seat for the next 20 hours.
BUT THEN… upon actually checking into my flight on KLM, I also discovered that I had a 9-hour layover in Amsterdam. Score one for me! This meant I had plenty of time to explore, which is exactly what I did. See below.
And now, of course, I am in Nairobi, half-settled into a fully-furnished and serviced apartment and jumping straight into my mile-long to-do list. The apartment is cleaned everyday. They even do our dishes – quite a luxury! And my first few visits to Kibera were met with lots of adorable children.