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Back from Kenya


I am now in Heathrow Airport, once again waiting out an 8-hour layover. Yesterday I had an hour flight from Malindi to Nairobi, where I had to spend about 8 hours as well. I actually got some sleep on the flight to London, about 3 hours I think and I feel pretty good this morning. I’ll be here until afternoon, fly for nine hours and arrive in Seattle only one hour later than when I left London!

I can hardly believe that I’ve actually left Kenya. I keep reliving memories and smiling to myself. I see those sweet faces as we passed by on the van, children waving as they walked to school. Each school had a different, colorful uniform. They looked so clean in them. The schools have benches only, about 70 students to a classroom and they have no writing materials. They only recite and read off the teacher’s blackboard. When we went to the Gede dancers compound, we saw a blackboard set up under a tree with multiplication tables written over it. Apparently that was there classroom.

The Kenyan people speak a very exact British-style English. Their hands are beautiful, with long graceful fingers. They move deliberately and slowly, with poise and grace. I marveled each day watching the women walk with large buckets (water?) on their heads. Yesterday on my drive to the airport I saw two children carrying their books that way, practicing, no doubt.

Our Earthwatch Team hopes to keep in close contact, share photos with Kodak EasyShare over the net, and have a reunion. We complained at times over the hard work or difficult circumstances, but each one of us was profoundly touched by the experience. We enjoyed laughter and tears as we worked and lived for a short while in a very beautiful and untouched culture so different from our own. I will always remember my summer in Kenya and hope that my students can benefit from my experiences, stories, and mementos that I carry back into my classroom.

Fellow teacher teammates from top, left to right: Andrew, Meredith, Allison, Karin, Marsha and Kiara.


What a wonderful blog! I do not spend much time reading blogs, but when I saw yours on the edweek update, I had to see it. I had a teacher in fourth grade that was active in environment activities- her passion left a life-long mark on me, as I am sure you will do with your students. I am just writing in to let you know about a wonderful free online photo sharing site, flickr.com. You may have heard of it- it is absolutely wonderful and so easy to use! If you do make a site there or elsewhere, it would be nice if you would leave a link to it here on your blog- I really want to see your photographs, as I am sure others do! Thanks for sharing your journey, congratulations on the opportunity, and best of luck for the coming school year,
Trishia Gallardo

Am delighted to hear that you had a wonderful summer experience in kenya. Am a native from south west kenya, south of lake victoria called kisii.
Reading through your blog has give a clear reminiscent of life in the kenyan villages. As a trained teacher who went to school under the cirmustances and experince highlighted earlier am pround that there are several ways learning takes place. Nature served as our learning environment, going to chase insects, observing trees and their different textures. In education those kids may not have the latest instructional tools but their memory is sharp.
Thanks for a positive description of the kenyan people and their Hospitality.That their culture and that is who they are"karibu kenya wageni wetu" meaning welcome to kenya our vistors.

i think its cool you did this!

so good to hear a visitor come n embrace people n their culture the way u did.i never read blogs n idont know why i read this bt tell u what,its nice that u came n had fun here in kenya....u r so much welcome again n probably travel more around here.we r good people n most of all peace lovin.am sure kenya wount dissapoint u.''bye n karibu tena''

http:// www.sangambayard-c-m.com

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