CBC Radio One Island Morning interview with Bruce about his time in Kenya:
Oh I bought 2 bottles at the duty free and put them in my carry on... at 12:35am we flew from Nairobi to Brussels (8 hours) where I went to Air Canada to connect to Montreal the AC ticket lady said the booze could not go in my carry on though Brussels Airlines had let me do do... sooo after much gentle yelling the AC staff said to keep the rum, I must pay $150 (the rum cost $24) for a 2nd stowed luggage - so the airlines just do not talk to each other damn it. Sooo I gave the rum to a AC guy and departed Brussels! for the 8 hours flight to Montreal... could not sleep was quite tired.
Connected in Montreal for the 1.5 hour flight to Charlottetown arriving at 5:30pm been up for 1.5 days. Well Maureen met me and we hugged and kissed and Maureen was not even embarassed when I would not stop.., also son Timothy and wife Lori and daughter Jade were at the airport too, as was my friend Ted Grant who visits Kenya often Home at 6pm , then great dinner ahhh Chicken... Called the kids and Maureens Mum..
The adventure ends...
already I do not feel SPECIAL as I am not different than everyone else here. Hope to return to Kenya but I doubt it-- away from family too long and too much money to travel,
Thanks to all of you, your donations, and emails of interest and support were so nice and so needed...
what next? It's going to be very hard to top Kenya ... Kenya is so special; beautiful gentle and warm and helpful people and teachers; with fantastic amimals and wonderful scenes and sights ; the St Claire girls are unforgetable ; was there for ten weeks and NEVER a dull moment , very glad I went!
love to all
Happy and Safe Holidays
As usual nothing is usual.... On 3 driver Elliot and I visited a true Masai vullage- kinda like going back a few thousand years- the women build the huts, carry the wood and water, the boys tend the animals and the men seem to talk. Their huts are cow dung HUTS and sometimed elephants and lions walk thru the small village of 200 people. I was the only Mzungu visiting and had bought gifts so the Masai were disapointed that I did not purchase
anything. BTW the Masai area is in the Rift valley and its a huge long valley almoost splitting all of Africa... gorgeous
We slowly drove for six hours back to Nairobi airport--said so long to Elliot, sat alone in a bar with a Tusker beer. At about 9pm I went thru customs but met a 22 ish year old girl from Calif. who has been volunteering in Kenya on and off for 2 years! Anne and I were on the Customs/ Immigration line, I went thru smoothly and the official tiold her her visa was already overextended and she was there illigaly and to get out of line and that she may have to go to JAIL for the night-- lots of tears then. So I stayed with here for an hour trying to assure her she would br cleared shortly. The lady immig. supervisor was very bitchy (maybe wanted a bribe) made her wait and wait and when Anne cried she told her to shut up or off to jail!!! .. kinda seems like an idle threat but is was a bit scary.
After another hour she stamped Annes passport, read her the riot act and allowed Anne to pass thru and since I had passsed Anne a lot of tissues, we were buddies.
Oh last nite I asked the desk manager to join me for dinner she isJune and is so nice allowing me comp. use and use of her own laptop to download pics- anyway, she is Kenyan, married to a Masai, has two boys and is very pleasant. And the Dining room was crowded with 100% whites except for the staff and June. Dinner was fine and I wanted to pay for her meal but since she is a Manager, she told me she eats free! Bonus! Also the food is great.
Up early and departed at 8am with Elliot my safari driver-- there are about 15 vans doing safari this morning mostly European tourists. We took a picnic lunch and never stopped-- baboons, Lions- male, female,cubs; Cheetah so beautiful and the mother Cheetah was so funny- her three 1 yr old cubs were romping like kids and kept jumping on her and knocking her over- you could almost hear her laughing; elephants (lots) ; cape Buffalo, Giraffes, Gazelles, Hippos - lots and so huge; three crocs 2 big ones and one smaller one; we ate our lunch while we sat in the van watching the hippos! Also went to a high hill called lookout point since you can so far- this park is huge. On lookout Elliot said he just heard from another driver that there were two male lions on the lookout a short time ago-- soooo Elliot said "Bruce stay near the van!" and he did not have to say it twice... Oh, then we saw lions- one male and one female in the shade sleeping/resting very close together, Elliot said they are mating and resting and mating-- a few minites later she arose, he arose, they mated, he growled (she kinda smiled), he nibbled her neck, they separated and BOTH dozed (NOT JUST HIM!) and Elliot said that will go on for a long time-- then she will hunt and he will dine! I can just hear you all laugh and smile!
Great day for sure tho it would have been nice to share the van with someone.
Tonite dinner at 8pm then reading as we safari from 6:30am to 8:30am-- to finish it all up. Then we breakfast, then visit a Masai village, then slowly drive to Nairobi arriving at the airport at 7 or 8pm
Hope to email from the airport...
Guess when I see a fox on PEI, I will not be as excited as prior to the big game safaris.
Bruce still Bwana for one more day!
- 44 mattresses another donor is buying the thick macintosh mattr. covers (protects from bed wetting)
- 8 macintosh mattress covers
- 600 jeans
- 300 belts
- 300 shirts
- 500 underwear
- 300 sweaters
- 300 T shirts
all you guys did well and the boys are pretty shart looking and they actually feel better too
At 4 am a rooster woke me at 4am IN NAIROBI and again at 5pm! Then up at 6am Marek made eggs and sausage for bfast very good. At 7am sharp the Safari driver Elliot arrived so said thanks to Marek and drove almost 6 hours to safari at Masai Mara. My lodge is SOPA VERY plush. We ate and did a 2 hour safari at 4pm WOW Lions eating a kill and I could have touched them... cape Buffalo, giraffes, abd gazelles etc at 6pm we headed back to the lodge and ran into a large herd of elephants. Elliot is a great driver and we plan a full day tomorrow and a half day on Sun and then to the airport for a Sunday night midnight flt home.
I am using the lodge managers desktop to send this--- EVERYONE is nice to me!
Showred with hot water kinda wild eh!
Its time but tough to leave
Only one or two blogs left- been away since Sept 22 so it will be 10 ish weeks away way too long.
You guys are all special, my girls were special very humbling, very
Bruce a true Bwana today-- jkust ask those LIONS!
Went to St Claires and walked and treated the girld for the last time.... I lined all 27 up in a row and hugged and kissed them tears. Then packed and gave the old laptop to a friend he loved it! said goodbyes to all Linus fred Sarah teachers,,,
Marek picked me up at 2:30pm but we stopped to get something at St Claires-- the girls were still standing around and ran to me and one jumped in my arms and threw her legs around me-- got in the car and they would not ley me close the door the tall pretty shy one was crying she is special here I am a full day later and I am tearful.. wow tough to do. Did not think I would get this attached want to go and want to stay
Drove to Nairobi went to a Mall lika any in the USA and got chicked and fries and took it to Mareks 2 bedroom apt - a 5 floor walk up the food was very good, We had a drink and I was off to bed at 11pm very nice apt.
don't think I told you this but about 2 or so weeks ago, I was lying bed reading under the mosq net and I saw something kinda large and blackish in the netting so I kinda grabbed at it and squeesed it and it was soft and yucky maybe a frog or a spider but when I felt it squeasy I leT go and it dropped-- well I was up in a flash but never found anything! hmmm maybe I dreampt it Hmmmm again!
Today I went to my celebration at the girls facility , got there prior to 9am but it started at 11am!!! Then the girls sang, danced and had a great time but it was 30C in the sun so all were sweating. The girls were quite good-- and it went from 11am to almost 4pm-- a little long. Then I skyped with a a teacher and his class in Charlottetown. Then at 4pm my ceremony at the boys facility was due to start but commenced at 5pm with singing and traditional dance... way way too many accolades for moi way too many
Then I had fish for supper and rice and salad living like a king!
Then at 9pm off we went to feed the street kids in Meru-- not in love with this feeding as it is uncomfortable but maybe one of the bestactivities I did here..... those guys are so tough, so dirty, so high... wow Tonight a 19 year volunteer old from Italy came to help. but the feeding got too rowdy-- the older street men were high and tried to grab extra bread and there a pretty good fight going on quite disconcerting for sure. So after we finished bread sharing, I suggest we stop for a cold, light Tusker (beer) back in bed at midnight
another interesting and incredible day
love all you guys
add another memorable day to the list. up early and ate 2 eggs then took the bball over to the new court shot hoops for a bit and later got an estimate of $7000 for making a a cement court -- way too much so the boys will have to use the dirt as best they can.
Then at 8am I went to see the class 7a and 7b girls -- 27 in all and we went for a walk--down dirt roads, down to a river-- it was quite warm and we were all sweating but most kept on their sweaters and that's what they do! At 11 am after 3 hours rambling around we went to the market for donuts (kinda) and orange fanta and I saw my lady friend in the market again and I gave her a donut and quietly slipped her 200 shilling note or about $2.40 and she was delighted. BTW that's about 2 days pay for a poor person!
Then across the street for a piece of sugar cane (28 pieces)-- what a loud row-- after we spent about 6 cents for each piece, the selling lady went crazy yelling the white guy should pay 5 cents more!!! My girls were yelling at her so she backed off. I wanted to sit in the shade and the girls said OK and they led me a MILE to a big tree with shade-- a mile! Anyway we all sat down, I layed down and closed my eyes and three girls put their sweaters under my head for comfort--- no, no, no-- they are not my harem! they are sweet girls and one said no other teacher ever treated them to cola and donuts and sugar cane! but I explained the other teachers get $30 to $40 dollars a week and I have decent savings...
Then we went to St Frances to skype Maureen and she looked like a million bucks and she read 2 short books to the girls who LOVED it! And at the end of the skype I said BY LOVE and all the girls said BY LOVE too quite funny. Then Fred our boys manager started a movie for them in the computer lab - nice thought but is was very heavy about child prostitution in India. Way too heavy for the girls so we cut it short...
Then at 4:45 they said Mass starts at 5 but we got there and Mass was starting at almost 6pm-- BTW I asked is they had to attend Mass and one girl said no but it is compolsary... funny! so I suggested we go the next 100 yards to the market and again get donuts and soft drinks-- I could have used a beer but not the right time or place. WELL were they ever so delighted. two treats in the same day!!! After that I delivered them to the girls area for Mass
and I walked back to my room for a long needed shower-- then the cooks made me a beef and pork and rice dinner to die for. This morning I gave them each 1000 shillings or about $11 ish as they were so good and patient with me and that's about two days pay! it is so easy to be generous here
Tomorrow there are two goodbye ceremonies 9am at the girls and 4pm at the boys and 8 or 9pm into Meru town to feed the 200+ street boys
should be another remarkable day
thanks to all and to all a good night.
the pic is moi and a few girls class 7