Sunday, January 15, 2012

Days 2, 3 and 4 in Kenya

Alright well its been a while since I updated the blog. So Kenya day two. Well mum and I had to drop Stu and Marie off at work (the Across base 4 mins down the road) so that we could have the car for the day if we needed it. We eventually decided to go to the local shopping mall which mainly consists of something called nakumart. A concept very similar to the American walmart, with everything from groceries to phones and top ups, to clothes and manchester, etc. Behind this mall was also a few banks, etc. and a smaller grocery store where we got some lunch items. We also exchanged some US dollars into Kenyan Shillings. $15NZ equals about 1000 Kenyan Shillings (KSH). We then bought an internet top up for the usb modem stu and marie were no longer using (they have two) so we could use the internet and also bought a sim card for myself plus topped up that sim with 50mins of call time, costing a whopping total of 400 KSH (less than $7 NZ). However upon returning to the house we could not figure out how to top up the modem and went back only to have the same problem until we eventually bought a larger and third top up which solved our problem (Lack of communication with Safaricom, the provider). So now we have unlimited data usage for a week, of which I am taking full advantage. 

Day 3 in Kenya was my birthday! 18th birthday in Kenya, not a usual place for a NZ teenager to have their birthday I guess. The day was rather dull as mum was still getting over jetlag and was a bit under the weather. However we did go out for dinner with both Stu and Marie and also Christine Perkins (Area Leader for Pioneers East Africa) who had brought with her a guy called Dane (I think that's how it's spelled) who had just flown in from the states and was on his way into South Sudan to check out the coffee industry there, briefly stopping by in Kenuya for a couple of days. Anyway for dinner we went to a famous restaurant called Carnivore. This restaurant is the most well known restaurant in all of Kenya, the name pretty much explains it all. Just about any type of meat they have or have previously had on the menu before, it's quite an experience. Basically they give you a starter of soup, etc. (not very carnivorous I know) presumably to hinder you from eating too much meat, then comes the main and most interesting part of the meal. They place a big centerpiece on the table with many sauces and salads on it to go with the meat. The meat is brought around by waiters dressed in awesome African style uniforms on big metal skewers (below is a photo of the cooking pit, I guess you would call it and the menu).

They then tell you what the meat is and slice you off a bit, not all the meat is skewered however as some is presented in smaller pieces. For example the Ostrich meatballs, which were so amazingly good, they are probably the best meatballs you will ever have, no kidding. There is no limit to the amount of meats you can try so it is essentially a buffet served to your plate. I am pretty sure Dane and I had almost everything on the menu that night, this included lamb, beef, pork ribs, chicken, crocodile, ostrich meatballs, chicken gizzards (google that one), chicken liver, ox testicle , pork sausage, pork and a couple of others I can't remember. The worst was probably the chicken liver and ox testicle. The chicken liver just tasted plain horrible and its the thought of what you are eating that makes the ox testicle hard to stomach. Overall it was a very enjoyable evening, at a price that would not be too uncommon in NZ. An amazing experience definitely worth having if you go to Kenya ever.

Kenya day 4 (today) meant Sunday and along with that, going to church. Mum and I went along to Stu and Marie's local church the Karen Community Church (KCC). The KCC was predominantly black Kenyan, with a few white Kenyan's and short termers alike. They got anyone that was new to stand up and share who they were and where they were from. Naturally as soon as I started talking everyone in the building turned to look at where the odd accent was coming from. The service was not too dissimilar to one you would find in NZ, not necessarily something I was expecting. Immediately after the service a local black Kenyan lady came over to my mum and I. As we discovered in July she is moving NZ to gain her PHD and coincidently in Wellington at Vic University. So she and mum exchanged contact details and mum is probably going to meet her when she gets back to NZ, also possibly help her with acclimatising to both the cooler weather and culture. After church there were a few local Pioneers friends over for lunch, including both Dane and Christine, also a couple of other kiwis, Greg and Lisa, and a couple of Americans with four kids. Nothing much of note but some good and interesting discussion. However as the American couple, Ben and Christie were leaving Ben told me of a regular local football (soccer) session that happens every weeknight, not far from his house in the early evening, so tomorrow I am going to have my first game of football (albeit friendly, supposedly) in Africa, something I have been very much looking forward to. That's about everything of note, I have much tidying of my room to do and photos to upload to Facebook, peace.

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