May 6, 2014
Most people turning 21 anxiously awake midnight of the night before, for that magic moment when some bars consider you legal and allow you to enter. This is not how you spend your 21st in East Africa. First of all, a 21st birthday literally only means that you should be married with 2 or 3 kids by now and I have been bombarded with questions as to why I am not. Anyway, my birthday was absolutely one of the most special and memorable that I have ever had. As many of you may have guessed, I am quite taken with hyenas, especially since coming to this wonderful continent. On the 5th of April, we took a trip to the Maasai market in the nearby town of Mto wa Mbu. We were wandering around when my friend Ellen ran up to me excitedly and a bit out of breath. She started saying something about a wood carving hyena and ran to show me. As we were admiring the little figure, all I could think about was how Moses warned me that hyena carvings didn’t exist in Africa because no one likes them. All of a sudden, Ellen was handing the Duka owner money and saying “Happy Birthday!” It was such a thoughtful and amazing gift!
The morning of my birthday, everyone was more than a little stressed because we had a paper due that evening and no one really knew how to finish it. We asked Kioko (our professor) for an extension because we had all done one of the sections wrong and needed to do some serious re-writing. We figured he’d push it back until midnight or something, but he pushed it back 20 days! I still can’t really believe it but it was a fantastic way to start the day! Later that day, Megan told me that there was a surprise in the Duka for me. She said I could go pick up a candy bar and a popsicle at some point during the day. It was really sweet surprise, pun intended! Mary and I decided to make some brownies to spice up dinner a little and give everyone a tasty treat to look forward to. We even put a little coffee in the mix to give the chocolate a little kick! It was a lot of fun to bake again; I definitely miss having a kitchen at my disposal. For dinner we had a cook-out! We made burgers and sweet potato fries, among other things. After RAP that night, I got to spend some time with Megan, Paige and Kat watching The Mummy Returns. We lasted about 20 minutes before we all began to fall asleep! We had an early start awaiting us in the morning so we decided to head to bed.
Asante Sana for reading!
The next blog will be coming soon, promise!!