So this is my last week in Kenya!

This weekend, for the first time, I made cheese.

One evening I’d bought a liter of fresh-from-the-udder milk and was boiling it to make cocoa, as I normally do. But it smelt a bit cheesey and started to separate. In stead of giving it all up as a bad Job I carried on boiling it until the whye looked clear and then sivved it through a (clean) white T-shirt.

The whey is still in the fridge, anyone know what it’s good for?

The cheese was bagel-quality cream-chese! Yum!

Also this weekend I went to visit the home of Mr Kioko, the accomplished catapault maker and system’s administrator who has featured on these pages in the past. A long journey in two vehicles over, in part, bumpy marram roads. The return journey was half in darkness and by about 8pm we turned onto the road that leads to Kangundo (6Km from Tala and last stop before home) and the vehicle puttered to a standstill. The conductor ran off into the darkness with a can to get fuel.

Good that we were almost home; better that we were close to Kangundo (I’d not much have liked to have been stranded out in the wilds between here and Machakos); best that we got in another vehicle and left the quiet bus standing there.

When back to Tala I still had to bicycle back to Holy Rosary, Kioko accompanied me; he seems to have some sort of genetic night-vision. I was using kind of intuitive proximity to him and his bike in order to keep on the road. At one point I squeezed my one working break like my life depended on it, to avoid some animal that was running in front of us.

“What did you think that was?”, he asked.
“I’m not sure”, I replied panting with effort of catching up with him again.
“It was a paper bag”.


Then I learned that his nocturnal navigation was as much a matter of faith as my own. A cyclist coming in the other direction almost hit him. Here’s how: the guy was on the wrong side of the road, but riding on the tarmac. So he passed between Kioko, who was keeping to the left, and the edge of the road on his left. At the endge of the road there is an inch or two drop(!) to the dirt so nobody really wants to go there in the dark at speed. This guy appeared from nowhere right in front of us and heading at a lick! He passed us in a wind. Kioko swore. We went on laughing and decrying the mad wrong-side-of-the-road guy, but I was still straining to see anything in front of me and wishing there was a moon.


  1. Fede Says:

    Mark! Your LAST WEEK?? Why didnt you reply to my emails!!! Looking forward to seeing you. Are you coming to TG on Feb 11th with us then?? Like good old times??


    fexxx 😛

  2. Tyg Says:


    Will you make me some? 😉

    Really looking forward to seeing you soon. Did you get my last e-mail (sent last week me thinks…).

    Drew and I were really hooked last year on a telly show called “rock school” . It was really uplifting to see what Gene Simmons managed to do with a bunch of private school kids more used to mozart that Rock. On Sunday they started the second series and he’s in a comprehensive in LOWESTOFT!!!! Wow, these kids REALLY don’t seem to have much to keep them occupied (somebody teach them some swing!). Made me think about you and how your childhood was 🙂


  3. Mark Says:

    How easily can we get fresh-from-the-cow milk in London? I’ll try!

    Whic school in Lowestofft? Must be BB, Denes was never famous for music. But we had plenty to occupy us ;7

  4. Shelley Says:

    I was just looking at your blog to find out when you would be leaving Kenya – I didn’t have to look very hard to find out. I deduce that it is now approximately two years since first we met at the Methodist GH and that you have seven hundred and twenty something crosses on your calender.

    I’m looking forward to spending time with you in London. I’m still getting used to this place again – its funny how much Kenya became my reference point and how hard it was to shake it off.

    Let us know when you are arriving and where you will be heading and if you need any help or hospitality or just a recently familiar face.


  5. Mark Says:

    Yup, the calendar is full of crosses.

    I’m sitting in a posh cyber in Nairobi waiting for dinner and then taxi to the airport. I’m calm but it does feel a bit strange that I’m not going to Afya centre to get on a Matatu back to dusty tala this afternoon.

  6. Drew Says:

    Flying home daa na-na na-na na-naaaaa.
    And the blues version that Mithi and I sing at the end of most nights dancing
    Walking home daa na-na na-na na-naaaaa

    WOW. At the airport -2 years fly fast.
    Well, I guess that we will see you soon. 🙂 yippee
    I finally got a website, so I guess that I am starting to arrive in the information age.
    Flying home-page daa na-na na-na na-naaaaa
    Although – I have no content yet.

    Crickey, things have changed for me in the last 2 years, and it seems like you played quite a big part of that – in your absence. Thanks.
    Mithi is just on her way up to hemel (where I am this week) and we’re doing an Andy & Rena aerials workshop tomorrow.
    Flying Mithi daa na-na na-na na-naaaaa.

    If you are coming out to dance soon?
    Do pay us a visit in the hangar in the next couple of weeks.

    Flying hugs daa na-na na-na na-naaaaa.
    Dr Ew #8)