Sunday, May 8, 2016

Arriving in Nairobi!

The Nairobi airport was wild:  everyone pushing their carts to get out of the “Nothing to Declare” side and agents pulling people aside to go through their bags.  We prayed we would just get through and we did.  We had wrapped our bags in the Johannesburg Airport so it would have been hard for them to go through those bags anyway.  But I didn’t want them pawing through my carry-ons.

Elder & Sister Lyman, a senior missionary couple from Washington state picked us up at the airport and introduced us to traffic in Nairobi!  Crazy.  Left-hand pattern of course.  But that didn’t mean much.  A car came right toward us on our side and then went over the curb and into the other lane.  On purpose!  Traffic lights and stop signs mean nothing.  You go when everyone else goes.  If you snooze, you lose.  Two lanes easily become five lanes as everyone noses in.  The redeeming factor is that everyone drives fairly slowly.  Especially in extreme congestion.

We were happy to be driven around for the first couple of days.  But today (Sunday) we drove ourselves to church.  Traffic is very light on Sunday, thank goodness!  But going home after church was another thing.  Even with GPS we got lost.  GPS said we were home and we weren’t.  We drove around for about a half an hour trying to find our apartment complex.  All of the places are walled so they all looked alike.  They are walled with barbed wire on top and gated with security guards.  We finally found it!  Hallelujah!  Had lunch and then went out driving again just to be sure we could do it.  We’ll see what tomorrow brings!  Our first day working in the mission office.

Be sure to click on the pictures to enlarge them so you can get a good look!

Here I am spying out my bedroom window.  I'm in a walled and guarded compound in an apartment building that I thought was very old and in great need of repair.  But outside the walls is a small home with no electricity and probably no running water.  The family is often out working in their garden.  Why should I complain that my flat is not quite what I expected?  At least it isn't a hut!!!

Here's a view out our livingroom window.  It looks into the extensive compound.  Lots of trees.

A close-up view of the house out my bedroom window.  Again, I think I shouldn't complain!  But to wash my dishes, I boil some water on the stove and then wash dishes in a pan.  Then I turn on the filtered cold water and rinse the dishes.  We can only drink filtered water.  The family in the above house doesn't even have filtered water.  Many children die young due to the unsafe water.  There are also parasites in the soil.  Dr. Jubber (from Lethbridge) is the Area Doctor here and he told us never to go barefoot anywhere!

A close-up of a woman out working in her garden.  What a hard life.

Every apartment has a jail-like door (complete with a huge padlock that LeRon is holding) into the entry way which is open to the outside.  The door to our flat is to the left of the kitchen window.

Wire on the wall surrounding our compound.  I do feel like I'm in jail!

Lots of tropical foliage.

Now I'll show some street scenes that I snapped as Elder & Sister Lyman drove us around on P-Day.  P-Day is the one day a week that we can go site-seeing within our mission or go shopping.  The rest of the week we need to concentrate on doing our mission work.

Another street scene from the truck window.  We all drive pick-up trucks.  Necessary for the state of the roads.

Handcarts seems to be a normal mode of transport here.

Handcarts are loaded with all kinds of things.  That's the way life is for many here.


  1. Definitely different than your European travels, eh.

  2. Benjamin saw that picture of the gate and said, "Why is he going to jail?" He thought it was so funny that that was part of your house!

  3. Driving sounds just like Turkey. :-D

  4. Thanks everyone for your comments!! Love you all!!