Microwave Popcorn

So today Deborah and I made popcorn…

Deborah asks if she can use my microwave to make popcorn, I obligingly say sure! And so she comes over with the microwave popcorn… but it’s not in the bag… Another student, Kemmy (who I think was not completely listening when Deborah asked) said that you take the popcorn out of the bag and put it in a container and then microwave it.  I was completely puzzled by this for as most people know when popcorn is popped… it tends to bounce around a lot.  So, we had the dilemma of having popcorn but not having the correct container in which to pop it (because she’d opened the bag), so, brilliant me said, we can either try popping it in a pot on the stove or we could get some tape and tape the bag so it can at least start popping.

We opted for the tape…

Well my idea worked, granted the tape started melting near the end and popcorn got all over the microwave, but it made far less of a mess than it would have.  The microwave was full of popcorn but the buttery goodness stayed inside the bag instead of making a mess.  Thus concluded by far the best popcorn making experience of my life… I had to write it down immediately so I wouldn’t forget it… Also, the popcorn is delicious.

Ash, Soot, and the Fires of Mordor

The first long weekend of the school year, a time longed for and cherished by all.  AND I SPENT IT CAMPING!!! Needless to say it was epic amounts of fun.

Our weekend off group that went adventuring in the Chyulu Hills included the Doss family (Richard, Hadassah, Zivah, and Zhara), The R’s (Lari, Robyn, Larissa, and Zander) and four SMs (Me, Jacqui, Katie, and Macy).  So despite the long and grueling car ride, where Larissa and Zander found it most enjoyable to bicker and whine (mainly Larissa) we made it no worse for wear.  Haystacks and setting up camp as well as discovering the “toilet” completed most of the night’s activities… MOST. By some twisted turn of fate, Macy and Katie ended up next to each other in our tent… basically Katie stole Jacqui’s spot.  And there was a battle. (aka we were up a while longer and Katie hit people)

Once the next day came, we were all quite sad about our campsite… it was very… lame. So after adventuring in lava tube caves (Jacqui tried to die about 3 times in the last one) we all emerged from the darkness into the very bright world.  Upon concurrence that we would stay both Friday and Saturday nights we set off to pack up and move.

Now for the fun… Riding on top of the R’s car… GLORIOUS! Wind in my face, sun on my skin, and off roading to boot.  We traveled

I personally love this picture

over hill and dale, fearless explorers, going where no one had ever gone before… ok that last part was a lie.  However I still felt epic sitting on the top of the car.  Next in our epic journey were the fires of Mordor… An exaggeration of course, but as it was Lord of the Rings weekend and the hills were on fire (spontaneous or intentional I don’t know but there was a lot of fire!) I decided that the Fires of Mordor was an apt description.  We could hear the crackling and see flames, there was so much smoke that it turned the sun orange.

After much toil, travel, and ducking to avoid tree branches, we arrived at what would become our new campsite.  What drew us was the amazing view of Mt. Kilimanjaro… if it weren’t for that I don’t know that we’d have stayed there.

Why you may ask? Soot, ash, EVERYWHERE! Our feet and hands were covered in black charcoal.  The land there was recovering from a fire similar to those on the hills, set to get rid of the old grass so fresh nutritious grass can grow.  We were a sight to be seen when we left.

Definitely the best camping trip thus far and to quote Katie it was a “Buttload of fun. I’m going to bring some White Bread next time. Maybe Iced Tea too! Can we go see the Flamingos?” Hahaha oh if only life was always so carefree and fun!

So after many pictures of Kilimanjaro, lazy chats around the lantern, songs about the bathroom, and meeting some Masai guys, we left our temporary haven for work and showers.

After less than two months I feel like I have lived more than a year at home. Truthfully, I don’t know how I’m going to leave, Africa is becoming more and more a part of me… but we’ll cross that bridge when we come to it.

Fare Thee Well

Our First Campsite

Our Second Campsite

Some things I am thankful for:

I am SO thankful that we have running water, electricity, washing machines, Ola Chips, Giraffes, awesome cars, guarded compound, fresh fruits and veggies, my stipend, and Internet…. oh! and I can’t forget the herd of gazelles (a couple of them just pranced across my office window view). Those are the things I am thankful for here. However, more important than those lovely accommodations are my girls.  Lord knows they can be horribly trying at times but I love every single one of them. Ines, Nimu, and Lisa (my RAs) have been the greatest! For me, knowing absolutely nothing about deaning, I heavily relied on them to tell me what was normal, expected, required, etc.  They’re the best, I couldn’t ask for better RAs. Charmaine welcomed me with a note on the first notes night (which is a time they can write notes to each other and to the guys) and it brought a smile to my face. Shaina is one that I can joke with and know that she will throw it right back, she’s quite a kindred spirit to me. There are so many others (54 in count) if I were to talk about them all here it would take up a lot of pages.  However there is one thing that makes me super proud of them.  We have one girl here who has a few issues and is on medication. These girls are all so compassionate, they are a huge blessing to me because they help her.  They pull her to class, make sure she showers, eat with her, and are just so kind to her every day.  I hope that by the end of this year I will have many stories to tell about my girls, and hopefully we get a Girls’ dean soon… I might have the girls’ respect but I can’t be a mother away from home for them. Haha no, I’m definitely more like their big sister.

Other than that, the weather is lovely, nice and cool for now; there is nearly always a breeze here, which is why we don’t have AC. Hopefully the weather holds for the weekend because it’s a long weekend starting tomorrow at noon and I’m going camping! Not alone of course, the Doss’ the R’s and Jacqui, Katie, Macy will all be there too. Yay for weekends off! I shall hopefully be filling you guys in… let’s hope I see some carnivores hahaha

Peace out!
Taylor

A week… maybe two… and a half


The close of another week… with some rain. I’m sitting in my office, just watching the guys play soccer as the rain falls… it’s actually a pretty cool scene. I wish I was out there playing…

^That was a week ago haha Apparently I can’t keep up with a blog to save my life…
Well, to recap, I have thrown a cat out of the dorm several times, seen baby elephants, gone to town, played volleyball in the rain, and overall done normal stuff.

The hardest part of every day is getting one of my students out of bed and on her way to class. Honestly I believe it is one iota shy of impossible to make sure she’s on time for classes, but one can only hope she will eventually make it to breakfast on time. I can wish, hope, pray…

This weekend was my weekend off, which means I got to venture off campus and have some extracurricular fun.  Thanks to the R’s and the Doss’s Me and the three other SMs off had a blast.  We witnessed the beauty of the Ngong Hills; handmade beads painted in beautiful colors; baby elephants that were so adorable; glassware being made; and I walked on a sketchy bridge (obviously my camera was with me the entire time).

When I’m not off scampering the Kenyan countryside like a crazy person, I seem to always be hiding out in the dorm… Not that I mind, I actually enjoy the time I get to spend with these girls, as obnoxious as they can be… I thank God daily that he’s pulled me a long way with my patience. I know I couldn’t keep my head and my temper in check if it weren’t for his guidance and the example of his love. Every day I have to ask again for his assistance but day by day it is getting more and more routine. Thank you God for that… Anywho, I love you all and miss you too 🙂

Laters!!! ~Taylor