Obama, we're not in Kansas Anymore!
People have been asking us to see pictures of Nairobi and whatnot. Jess is better at such things, taking pictures and providing a more conventional narrative. She posted some pics and talks about our day to day lives here. Here's a few pictures I have to add, from in and around our neighborhood, Runda.
I still feel somewhat like a fish out of water here. Not that that is a bad thing. There's certain aspects of living here that no one here should ever be comfortable with, like the extreme disparity between rich and poor, being confined behind electric fences with guards, and having indentured servants clean up after you.
Most of the time we have been hanging out up in the northern part of Nairobi, between our new home in Runda and the UN/ICRAF complex where Jess works. They have a gym here and good wireless and coffee and outdoor tables to hang out amidst lush gardens with monkeys and birds. The internet reception is not so great at our place and the power often cuts out, sometimes for the whole day (like today). Not to mention that they have a TV here showing the Olympics. Today is the last day. We watched USA beat Spain in basketball (was rooting for Spain of course). American athletes seem extra arrogant from this perspective. I was hoping to catch the marathon, even though I already heard who won. Probably the only time Kenya makes the news in the U.S. That and being home to Obama's poverty-stricken half-brother.
I've ventured down to Westlands a few times. I'm used to driving on the left now. But it's still hard with the roads being so crappy and narrow and people driving like maniacs and people walking and biking all over the road. But being that I learned to drive in Mexico, it feels somewhat natural the way people drive here. Like the roundabout thing makes sense to me and I'm not sure why they aren't used in the U.S. more. I've been down to the Kwani? offices (the topic of my last post) a few times down in Westlands. Great to know such an engaged and vibrant writing community exists here. Here's some pics I took around there.
Yesterday was our first day we really explored the city. We drove down to Karen and to Nairobi National Park. The park is literally fifteen minutes from downtown Nairobi. Very strange to have this abundance of "wildlife" in such proximity, especially considering they are free to come and go. Here's a video driving through the city and through the park.
Jess took more pictures of the zebras, giraffes, ostriches, etc. I was busy shooting video and driving. But here's a few more pictures I snapped to give you the idea.
(c) 2008 Derek White