Tuesday, 9 February 2010

Kill da Rat

For the past month I have been living in a preschool. We eat dinner at children's tables in the classroom. When I wake up I hear kids blood-curdling shrieks as they seperate from their mothers each day.

My job is awsome. In order for me to resolve some of the issues surrounding the centres I have been visiting some of the youth group leaders to talk one on one with them. This means visiting the slums all over Nairobi. I am invited into their tiny tin shanties and treated like an foreign diplomat while they cook some food and serve me tea. Most often having to yell over the reggae that is playing loud with the single dim light bulb hanging in the middle of the room flickering at every bass beat. Its so hot in tin shacks by the end of the meeting you have unbuttoned your whole shirt and are lying down sweating like a dog.

One of my favourite episodes that happened was a time when I was helping a youth group pick up some plastic for the centre. When we arrived in the back part of a house we stood looking at the pile of plastic bottles and jerry cans. As we were talking we noticed the plastic was moving on its own. All of the sudden the owner of the house yells "ITS A RAT.KILL ITTTTTT!" We isntantly start kicking through the plastic pile, bottles flying, I get a glimpse of this rat which was more like a mutated cat. It's by far the biggest rat I've ever seen, and it was running around the back yard frantically trying to save it's own life as we were kicking up an down after getting a glimpse of it here! then there! then over here! The diseased creature takes a right and runs out the back gate with three of us behind this racing rodent the size of Oprah's thigh. Now I find myself in the middle of a thriving slum market chasing this thing with two other guys, one of them manages to get close enough while running to give it a big kick, but he misses and his shoe goes flying up in the air 50 feet across moving at 60 kmh and hitting a very very old woman as she was bending down to look at a pair of slippers she was thinking of buying. The woman has no idea what happened. The rat keeps running full speed and now we're chasing it alongside a big cement wall. I'll never forget the image of the three of us running after this monstrosity down the dirt path, it's legs working on overtime. We finally caught up to it and before I could do anything, the two guys started kicking it all over the market, at one point one of them kicked it so hard, it went streaming through the air and just about decapitated a man sitting on a rock selling cigarrettes but luckily he put his hands up and blocked the flying rat from hitting his face. After a few solid kicks, we had vanquished the disease spreading vile vermin.
OK I have to go to work I'll post some more stuff later.

Taking a break in the shade
I carried this thing with a couple hundred pounds of plastic for 5 kilometers in the hot sun
Edwin while we were building a chicken coop

Building a chicken coop

Edwin chopping up plastic before it gets shredded. Look at the mountain.