26 June 2009


Busy would characterize the past two days.  Coupled with the fact that we lost power for a bit today, I have spent little time on the computer and much in Malava.  Yesterday was the arrival of our fourth, Katie, and today was the parents meeting.  In terms of specifics, there is not much worth reporting.  We were treated to dinner with the nuns to welcome Katie to Malava yesterday.  Today, I scrambled about and killed time by reading and chatting at the parents meeting. 

I may have mentioned this last time we had a meeting, but today our speaker was late.  With time need to be filled, a CBRW stood up and called for the attention of the parents.  Attention on her, hands move upward and song rises with the meeting of palms.  The group responds in song and sing their way through the time wasted.  It is not necessarily the song that was striking, although I can never get enough of the fact that music is a part of every facet of Kenya life, it is the fact that nobody was upset or bothered by the hitch in the program.  The only thing I saw was smiles as everyone enjoyed song.  There were no blackberrys clicking or ipods out or general grumblings because everything was not perfectly on time.  I read recently a commentary in the newspaper concerning the trouble with this in Kenyan culture.  The writer exclaimed that it would turn off tourists and make it so they would never want to return to Kenya.  I think that he misses the point.  With the call for Westernization, the cry will come from individuals who are enamored with the life of the West.  They see television and movies of a false America.  Service, they are told, is what matters most.  What he misses is the fact that rushing around from meeting to meeting with emails sent on the go-between, a state of being is lost.

When time remains of little importance, a person can be within the moment as it moves forward.  Without dwelling on what has passed and being anxious about the future.  There are certainly ways in which Kenya needs to modernize, but why does wisdom’s beacon have to be in a Westernly direction?  Can’t it be internal or even, God forbid, in a different direction?