Back to routine

May 31, 2013 - Mombasa, Kenya

At 5:30am in the morning we reached Mombasa. I was dozing. It was thanks to the Matatu-Conducters, that I knew we were there. I recognized their calling out the names of the junctions. “Ferry Ferry Ferry” or “Bamburi Bamburi Bamburi” (Kiswahili word for Pirates – the name of a beach). Even though Mombasa is noisy thanks to the Matatus and Tuk-Tuks, I prefer it to Nairobi. People are more relaxed. Not as much in a hurry as in Nairobi. And when someone is pushing one per accident, you’ll hear them saying “sorry, sorry”, instead of just continuing their business.

Being back to my substitute home-town for one year and knowing I had to go back to work, I was preparing myself mentally for this new period. I went to my old project, the Reachout Centre and created a timetable for school. After talking to the headmistress and all the teachers, it was agreed. I have to teach Computer, Creative Arts and PE (Physical Education) now. It’s a primary school, but from class 4 to 8, they have two classes. Meaning I have 13 classes to teach. Plus 10 students in class one need individual attention. I could offer this thanks to my mum. While in Tanzania, she helped me a lot to gain some basic therapist-skills. Those 10 students are behind, they can’t read or calculate and I am to offer them patience and time to develop. One of the reasons why they are behind: their parents couldn’t afford to put them to the Kindergarten and have to pressurize them now (they have to learn basics in Kindergarten already). Another thing: many things are about competition. And some of the parents are eager to see their children succeed and put them into class 1 when they are only 4 or 5 years old.

My timetable is full kabisa (Kiswahili for completely) now. I have 7 hours of teaching every day. When I’m coming home, I’m too tired to do anything anymore. It’s only sometimes, that I’m visiting the Reachout Centre. And every Wednesday there are the Rotaract-Meetings. I want to become a member of the Rotary’s Club. The Rotaract is for people between 18 and 30. The members are friendly and doing a lot of community service. Reminding myself of the support of the Rotary’s Club Lampertheim from Germany, I am very happy that I got introduced to the Rotaract Mombasa.

The last weeks were busy with weekend- and school activities. Our school got a lot of support by the local government. They sponsored trees, so we were able to have a tree-planting-day in school. In the presence of Hassan Omar, the new Senator of Mombasa.

Another day was the Mombasa Clean Up. Unfortunately, it was raining the night before. The streets smelled bad and everything was sticky. They didn’t provide with enough material, so we had to use plastic bags to pick the rubbish. When I realized, I was holding a used syringe and needle in my hand while only protecting myself with a ripped bag, I proposed to continue another site. The place we chose to help first was a place for drug-users.

The main spot where people gathered was at the market. The presence of Hassan Joho, the new Governor of Mombasa distracted many people from work. The few who were not worshipping the politician didn’t fear getting dirty at all. Many were students. Aside from the heat and the risk of infection, the day was great. The Rotaract members were also there and contributed to work being fun.

What else… I attended another wedding, went to the Reachout Rehab Centre in Likoni to watch a doctor doing his work and studied for my improvement in Kiswahili. A family friend delivered her baby. I visited her in hospital. A big hot room full of beds. Some of the new mothers had to share their bed with another woman. Compared to a public hospital here, our hospitals are the highest luxury. It was loud inside this room. Babies crying, mothers complaining, nurses calling out names, looking for people. The two people I came for were very happy though. She is used to these conditions and the one day old baby was just finding out about the new world it’s living in now. Cute.

All in all I can say my life in Mombasa has become too busy to feel homesick very often. After school I’m playing with my host-sisters a little, talk to my host-mum and aunt, we watch the worst TV-soap ever together and then go straight to bed. Time is passing by very fast.


3 Comments

sonja:
June 2, 2013
hello,
sorry it took long. its just when there is no electricity-its hard to get internet
i am happy about every comment
have fun reading it
although locals refer to this season as being cold-there is still enough heat to be extendet to you!
wish you all the best
sonja
Conny:
June 26, 2013
Liebe Sonja !

Herzliche Glückwünsche zu Deinem Geburtstag wünschen wir Dir aus der Ferne. Und viel Spaß weiterhin beim Schulunterricht und dem sonstigen Leben.

Alles Liebe von
Conny + Jörg +
Jenny + Lotta + Felix
sonja:
July 3, 2013
danke dir! also euch allen... mein geburtstag war sehr turbulent, aber ich habe mich riesig ueber die ganzen geschenke und anrufe aus deutschland gefreut!!!
so vielen dank.
euch auch eine schoene zeit dort oben =)
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