Things moving

I had a very nice weekend: Friday was the birthday of a friend in Nairobi, for which there was a fabulous Italian dinner at a posh restaurant in the city, and Saturday was another birthday, this time of Katie the Peace Corps volunteer from up the road in Tala. Katie and I went and stayed with my friend in town and we all celebrated both birthdays. Saturdays celebration was a quiet night in with some home cooked food and a game of scrabble but oh boy, how I miss quiet nights **with company** like that.

While in town visited the college’s Internet Service Provider to find out more about their operation and how our charges are calculated. My first visit to an ISP and I enjoyed that thoroughly too. I even picked up a sample of screened network cable with a connector which we can now use as a demonstration piece at the college.

On saturday Katie and I went looking for beads on Nairobi’s colourful River Road. Anyone who lives here should be laughing at that. I use the word Colourful here in much the same way that Interesting is used in “May you live in interesting times”. As we approached the place where the bead show is a remarkable phenomenon occurred. There must have been a police man somewhere because suddenly and miraculously the roadside sellers — those who sell an armfull of clothes or plastic nicnacs from a stall made of cardboard cartons at the side of the road — filled their arms with their wares, folded their cartons and fled. The sight of one transitory trader making transit clearly unnerved the next and the effect spread down the road in a wave that passed us by in a moment. By the time we came out of the bead shop they had all returned and reestablished themselves in place hawking their wres.

Another remarkable form of movement happened while we were waiting at the railway matatu stage for our vehicle to fill up and take us back to Tala. Over by the entrance to the railiway yard a small whirlwind — perhaps thirty feet of turbulence made visible by an accumulation of red dirt (only the roads themselves are paved, siewalks and matatu stages are bare earth) — whisked its way down the stage and round the corner onto the main road, as if following the rules of the road. Well, if the rules of the road specified that it was appropriate behaviour to summon up a hundred plastic bags, discarded newspapers and other litter and fling them aborad in all directions. Katie is from Colorado where, apparently, really big and dangerous whirlwinds — the ones that deserve the name tornado — are not uncommon but for me, from Suffolk, this is the biggest and most spectacular such experience I have ever witnessed.


  1. Drew Says:

    We were very very silly at JB’s last night.

    Rena, mithi, pink Heidi
    and some that I think you don’t know
    Tim, Daniel Ng and alexi (our honey pot dance battle team, except rena who we rejected for not being crazy or silly enough – thats not true. :rolleyes: )

    Its the first night of dancing in a very long time where I have though hmm we *NEED* Mark.

    You would have been proud of us.

    Especially the bits where Rena tried to disorganise us to do baby acro. and then we had a swimming competition across the floor 🙂

    We’re all getting together for a rehersal tonight.


  2. Mark Says:

    I have always though it best to have rehersals **after** the event. :crazy:

  3. Drew Says:

    When I say alexi, I mean Anika, but obvously my brain is not working at all today. 😀

  4. Sophia Says:

    Dr Mark!

    I love the Dr Bittejug logo! Well deserved.


  5. Jan Says:

    Hi we are just back from a weekend in Taupo GP thing Bt I had lots of fun..
    Read about the good time in town well done and the cooking
    yes handles are good.
    and as for winds was it that windy ? If it was not comming in your direction all well and good !sounds as if it was good how is Kae and did she get the beads she wanted ?
    give her our regardes.
    Love jan

  6. Tygger Says:

    Greetings Pyglet!!!!

    Humblest appologies for being SO absent from your life of late. Received your e-mail – owe you a long reply. Just a quicky here to say "hello", and that "I’m still alive". Have no net access now that I’m a lady of leisure, so e-mails and such are few and far between. Maybe I should WRITE you a letter, or heaven forbid, TAPE you one!

    Have been using my Britishness to travel in Scandinavia (another reason for not having managed to reply to your e-mail). Wish I’d taken Drew – my dad is hard work to travel with!

    Neeways, slightly at a loss as to what to do with myself, but its also quite nice to NOT have anything specific to do right at this moment.

    Love you lots

    Love & hugs