During my trip, I stayed at the Holy Cross formation house, which is quite near CUEA, in a neighborhood called Karen (oh, the irony!). The formation house was mostly empty while I was there, which was technically at the start of the southern hemisphere’s winter (although since Kenya is equatorial, their “cool season” is completely unrelated to what I’d think of as winter in Northern Indiana). Pictured below are the residents of the house for the time that I was there.
We’re at a restaurant called Carnivore, which is known for serving exotic meats. We had ostrich and crocodile, and of course some local Tusker beer!
On one Saturday during my visit, my CUEA hosts took me to the Nairobi National Wildlife Park. There’s a wildlife park completely surrounded by the city of Nairobi! It was an amazing experience to visit the park with the Chair of the Biology department – he was able to identify all kinds of birds and animals, and tell me all about their life cycles, and what pressures they’re facing due to encroaching human populations. While we didn’t see any lions or cheetahs in the wild, here are a few exciting photos of wild game that we did see.
I also was privileged to visit the Holy Cross mission in Dandora. Dandora is in the eastern part of Nairobi, and, if it is known in the West, it’s for being the site of a huge trash dump in the middle of a large urban population. I attended a Mass that was said in Swahili, which was beautiful; and the choir was absolutely phenomenal! Fr. Tom didn’t warn me about the incense that was very prominent in the service, and I spent a good portion of the Mass trying not to sneeze!
This trip was my first experience in a developing country. I see now, in a way that I could not conceptualize before, what kinds of challenges the people and stakeholders there face. I am looking forward to continuing to work with and get to know the Holy Cross and CUEA friends I’ve made, and hope that I can enable them to create positive change for the people of Kenya.