Tuesday, 11 May 2010

Stacy, Momma Stacy and Queen

The last week has had some interesting developments.

One of the best parts of last week was a meeting attended by myself, Kaka and some other members of Mathare Environmental Youth group with the M.P. of the Starehe Constituency Honorable Bishop Margaret Wanjiru. The past few months we've been working on ideas for building a multi-story resource centre. I received a call from Kaka on Thursday and he told me if we didn't have a proposal tomorrow for the Constituency Development Fund we would never get any money. I raced to Mlango Kubwa (where the recycling centre and community hall that we built is) and proceeded to spend the next 7 hours throwing together an emergency proposal pulling all kinds of numbers out of my arse. We are proposing to build it on top of the existing foundation that we built a year ago.

The next morning was the meeting and it seemed from the nice M.P's attitude that she will be allocating a very healthy sum of money for us to construct a community hall with another floor on top that has computer resource centre, and another room for children to come and study, do homework or choose a nice book from the library we are going to put together. It will be a milestone for Mlango Kubwa which has absolutely nothing for idle children who spend their off time throwing dirt in each others face's. Needless to say I'm really excited to be a part of it and look forward to seeing it progress but not looking forward to all the bureaucratic bullshit that will come along with it. 10 years ago or even less, more like 5 years ago, Mlango Kubwa was in a ditch, run by the Mungiki (a tribal gangster sect) who would tax people for walking and if anyone refused to pay, usually they received a machete to the neck. Yesterday Kenya power and lighting put in some floodlights on the main market road. This means hopefully the thieves won't be coming around. Usually around midnight thugs come and hide in the dark corners waiting for their victims, usually hitting them with a machete even before asking for any money.

So on a more personal note, yesterday I had a plane ticket home. I didn't get on the plane. I have applied at the University of Nairobi and I'm still waiting to hear back from them if I have been accepted yet. I applied in mid March and because I am a Canadian they have dragged me through the mud in their childish (again for lack of a better term) bureaucracy trying to figure out if I am qualified to learn at their University. It's been so painful trying to deal with them and when I told them I needed to know before May 10th they didn't even blink. The acceptance list was released mid April!

So anyways, it looks like I'll be planting my roots in this city a little deeper. I don't mind at all, I'm way more preoccupied in Nairobi than I am in Vancouver. Actually there are a number of reasons why like Nairobi so much.

1. I'm not subjected to looking at androgynous men wearing purses.
2. I can make 20 dollars last so much longer.
3. The dance floor isn't covered by a pool table surrounded by mopes.

I'll stop there before I get insulting...

Here are ma ladies. Mama Stacy's cafe where I eat every day and watch Stacy grow. The girl at the end of the clip is the seven year old Queen and she isn't related but she helps out at the cafe chopping veggies and doing errands. She has no parents and Mama Stacy took her in. LOOK AT HOW BEAUTIFUL STACY IS!!!!!

P.s. I didn't shoot this, that's why the lighting is all wrong.

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