Two turn-tables and a microphone

I’m planning on spending the next few months in East Africa, until my new job starts up this spring. I’m looking forward to the change, though i do admit there’s much fear involved. Fear of being in an unknown place. I’ve never lived that long away from home, away from people who I knew … it’s funny how the idea of backpacking across europe seems a bit more inviting. Maybe its the fact that I’ll have very little control over where I move, where I go, what I do . . . for three months . . .it has to be a humbling experience for sure, but can I handle it? I guess time will tell. The door has been open for a while, and I’ve said “Nu-uh” many times, but it’s become very clear . . . i must do this.

Last december, this was my opinion about coming to this place… very hesitant, nervous… fear of the unknown… losing the control over ones own life that one usually has living in a place like New York, or anywhere else in the states. When I visited here last summer, part of me couldn’t wait to get back, but this trip has been quite different.

Orthodox Christians celebrate Holy Week on a different calendar than the western churches, every so often it lands on the same week, but this year, it was a week later. Coptic Holy Week in a Kenyan church is not much different than what you’d find in the USA or in Egypt, except for the language. Even though I was working like a madman, I managed to take a few hours every day and attend service, to just clear my heart and mind. Instead of singing the entire long psalm, only the first stanza of the “solemn” psalm tune is used. Much of Coptic hymnology is based on tunes, and not on actual hymns. The same tune can be applied to different words, depending on the time of year. Easter, however, was a little different. For the most part it was pretty much like a regular Coptic Easter… got the incense, the offering, the thanksgiving, the readings, the processional, the Qama Haqqan, the cymbals, the Faray7ee tune… then communion happens, and it’s a whole different story. It was one of the most celebratory, joyful Easters I’ve ever experienced…

So… we were talking about Symbols, eh? Well, the guys came up with their logo for their group. Two hands coming out of the map of Kenya with a cross in the middle. Sharing, Brotherhood, and Spirit.. that’s what it signifies… on the bottom reads “Lift Up Your Brother”, a quote from a song by Culture… one of the more popular reggae artists that people like down here. Last night I was back in Kibera with Father Moses, in the same set-up as the first time we went to Kibera many months ago… the people running towards the car… the little hotel where we met… although this time it was a little different.

You can tell this time, the guys had more ownership over their meeting…. they would stand up, and say something, give their opinions bout certain matters, and to be honest, this is the way it should be… the the of people always asking for a hand out needs to end soon….. There were a few things here and there, asking for this thing or that thing, but overall, the mood was different.

Unfortunately, it wasn’t a happy gathering. The brother of one of our guys was killed the day before in a gang-related incident… no one really knows why it happened…

Just the day before, we were all together and everything was ok.. we had a last pow-wow of sorts.. played some games, had a little talk, had some breakfast, and I gave em each a framed photo of our trip in Kiambu so they can remember.

We got together for a few pics, and you can see in the back… our banner being held high… these guys are the reason I want to return to Kenya – - I believe something can happen from them.. I don’t believe one bit that a life of addiction is their fate…

If you can recall one of the comments that was left, my boy Chris said something along the lines of, I can only be limited by my expectation of them… that I gotta have big dreams for these guys…. He said it a lot more eloquent, i’m sure

And you know, when i first started this work, i was told to expect nothing, and i’m seeing quite the opposite happening….




So i’m packing up the last of my things… sayin bye to people and stuff. I finished a program, handed it off to a new programmer…. and found myself within a family over here.

I’m gonna miss Nadia, especially… i know she’ll visit us soon… definitly proud of her work.

Well – i better get goin – - got much to do before I leave.. i’ll leave you guys with this clip from Easter. Wow – i’m kinda sad.. i’ll be back soon, I’m pretty sure of that. But i’m excited to see my friends and fam again.. it’s been a long time since that night in the city, in early february…

Good times are ahead, i’m sure.

Tunachekiana badai!


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On Charity….

When you’re living in a place like Nairobi, a city where American and European NGOs thrive, it seems that people come here to “save the world”, in one way or another…

... and it’s not a bad thing.

Yes there are many problems here, and many people have devoted their lives to solving them, for no other reason than their deep love and respect for this land.

Sometimes, the attitude of charity takes a form that is less than noble. Not just for some people, but even within the same person, this dichotomy in what is charitable, may occur. Whether intention is bad or good; that is not what I’m arguing, however, I do believe that TRUE charity is NOT driven by the desire to meet someone’s needs.

True charity has less to do with being the provider of a person’s basic needs , but has much more to do with reminding a person of their God-given right as a human being to have these needs met. I believe this to my core, and I will stand by it till the day I die. Giving to someone should restore dignity to them, not remind them that they are, and forever will be receivers… Reminding a person of their need, is as good as robbing them of their sovreignty and self-respect.

This is one of the things I’ve learned by being in Kenya. We’re not here to do anyone any favors. This is one world… period.

Let’s get together and feel alright?

I think it’s time for some Marley – good night.

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Good-Bye Kenya

Got about less than a week left before I return back the states. I thought this trip was going to be about accomplishing… but it was more about learning, and discovering. I accomplished a lot in the short time I was here. Developed a new system for the Hope Center. In the process now if a few last minute changes, and training a new developer to take over the project long term.

I have a lot to think about when I leave here… about next steps. My sister told me the other day “Do you realize all that you experienced while you were here?” She was kinda laughing… it was intense for sure. Between Sam, and the program, and the tuesday meetings, and everything, I think despite all these things, life in New York has a way of making it seem as if those things never happened… and though that will be a challenge, I don’t even think life in NY could ever let me forget.

I still have a good 7 days left here, and although they will mostly be spent working on the software, and tying up loose ends, there will be room for a few things to take home with me.

I’m meeting with the guys for our last “Tuesday Night”... no movie, gonna spend time together, just talking… maybe a few games… I’m trying to put together a little gift for each of those guys, though I’m not sure exactly what I can give…. Maybe framed pictures from our trip. attached with a note or something.

Anyways, it’s almost time for lunch… The above pictures were drawn by Henry and Joseph. They gave em to me last week. One says “Goodbye Kenya”... the other says, in a nut-shell, “Remember us”. Like that’s even a question!

I don’t think I could ever forget.

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It was wild… for real!

Saturday… the 15th of April… tax day in the United States, and my dad’s birthday. It was my first day off from any sort of responsibility, since late February, and it felt nice to just veg for a while. There’s not much to say about Saturday, the pictures pretty much say it all. I cuddled with a cheetah, and made out with a giraffe. Not bad, huh? How did I get in the cheetah’s cage? Well… you’d be suprised what a zookeeper would do if you dropped him 100 KSH. And as far as the giraffe goes…. I guess this giraffe had a thing for Medeterranean looking guys from New York… I was standing there checking out the scenery, and instead of head butting me like it was doin to most of the on-lookers, it planted a nice big smooch on my mug. What was it like kissing a giraffe? I don’t recommend it. As my sister said after the fact “I’m sure there’s a verse somewhere in the bible about what you just did, and how you shouldn’t do it.”

And she’s probably right.


comforting words

trying to see how close i can get to a cheetah before it attacks me

It’s really not dead

So this thing landed on my head. Apparently it died and fell out of a tree… tragic

Me and the sis

Silk worms created all this

A caption would degrade us both… it’s obvious what’s happening here

Wart hogs usually hang with giraffe cuz, they have poor eyesight and memory, and if there’s a predator nearby, they’ll know once the giraffe start running

We had a moment

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Paradise Lost – the concluding story

Yea this pretty much captures the general mood of the day. “thumbs-up” is common here. I honestly forgot what we do back home in the states… gang-signs? “wesssssssiiiide” ? was that right? Oh and here “2 fingers up” doesn’t mean peace, it means “Chill, bro”. Well, I guess that does mean peace… whatever.

After some more hiking, we emerged at a riverbank overlooking a large man-made lake. Across from us were some coffee plantations; not as extensive as the ones in Kericho, but massive nonetheless. And at the banks we just chilled for a moment. In a few minutes, I noticed many of the guys were eating fruit… and I’m thinking “we didn’t pack all this fruit.” “Maper, Pablo, maper…. shika” So he offered me “maper”... really hard on the outside, pink on the inside, lots of seeds, but really (really) good. I found out later that maper is really Guava.

Junae gathered us all together for a few games… now in the states we have games like this… similar to “they hokey-pokey” or “the chicken dance”, group interactive song-games with body movements and clapping… yet our games are more for kids, while these were just COOL… like seriously a lot of fun….

“Kuri-Kuri-Kuriiii….. Kuri-Kuri-Kurah!” as we danced around a circle, creating a bit of a scene (as Junae had planned) All the boats in the river had their eyes on us. One boat decided to paddle over and check us out… and then took pictures of us… yea it was a little wierd. “Kuri-Kuri-Kuriiiiiii… Kuri-Kuri-Kurah!” I’m tryin to upload some video – but the net aint supporting it at the moment….. wait hold on.. there we go..

As we marched around in the mud, our shoes got heavier and heavier… and we each got taller and taller. It provides a slow kind of resistence, as the mud builds up on the bottom of your shoes…. See, the mud here, is more like a clay, so it doesn’t wash off so easily. It sticks.

Men of 1,000 Talents

After lunch we kinda just lounged in the picnic area, talking, chatting… When I remembered some of the things that the guys said they’d prepare, a drama, some songs, etc… The Kenyan drama is an artform in and of itself, the way it’s executed and performed, very different from dramas of the west. Young people create dramas for fun, not for any competition, or pursuit of fame, but just to do it. The dramas are a mixture of scripting, improvisation, characatiures… very enjoyable, for sure!

So Ment and Jenga performed a little drama for us, and afterwards we got some Christian Hip-Hop from Henry and Jose (pronounced with a J, not like the spanish, Jose) ... “Umemsifu nane? JC!”

I felt kind of out of place when I performed for them my acoustic rendition of “Under the Bridge” by the Red Hot Chili Peppers… but it is one of my favorite songs of all time, and its something from my country that I could share with them…. I think westerners are more fascinated with the culture of the east, moreso than they’re fascinated with our culture… that’s the general vibe, I’m guessing.

The rest of the day was excellent… row-boating, camel rides, more group games and activities, some soccer… The scene on the field is etched in my memory, the man on teh megaphone with his group of 100 students from Daystar University, and they were loud and having fun, so naturally we felt we needed to have even MORE fun than they were. So we started making some noise of our own… the battle of the noises proceeds, but one can’t compete with a 200 watt megaphone….

Caller: I want.. I want!
Group: I WANT!
C: I want.. I want!
G: I WANT!
C: I want Junae, to dance like this, like this, like this, like this, like this, like this, like that!

(Junae gets in the circle)

J: I want… I want!
G: I WANT!
J: I want… I want!
G: I WANT!
J: I want Rajaab to dance like this, like this, and shake like this like this like this like that!

We managed to make the time go by.

As I spoke with Jonte overlooking the field, I hear behind me:

“PABLO! COME HERE!” Followed by the voice of a woman “Nooo! I have a boyfriend!” Apparently, the guys were tryin to set me up with a beautiful Somalian woman from Daystar Uni. These women from Daystar told my friends that they were fascinated when they saw me singing in Swahili on the guitar and wanted to know my story, to which they decided to call me over…

It seems that everyone here is trying to do 2 things:

1) get me to buzz my hair short
2) get me married

“Paul, why don’t you get married, brother?”

They don’t understand how we do things in NY hehehe. My parents would have to agree with my friends here, though “Get married, ya Paul!”

As sunset approached it was time to return home… We huddled together, and each gave an encouraging word to the other, thanking everyone for making this day what it was. That Saturday at Paradise Lost was one of my most enjoyable and memorable days here in Kenya. I hope that one day these guys will look back and remember our time here. It’s sealed in my heart for sure. The question remains, however… what next? I have ideas for these guys, but in a few weeks I’ll be gone. I’ve been trying desperately to find someone to take over the work here…. it’s troubling to think that all this time was invested for nothing… there’s a lot of work to be done… If it weren’t for college loans…


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Paradise Lost

It’s not quite Disney World… it’s a bit better, less expensive, more earthy, natural, less corporate, less branding, more mud, less fairy dust. It’s in a town called Kiambu, which is right outside of Nairobi, but a worlds away, in landscape, and lifestyle, and the name of the place… well you probably guessed… “Paradise Lost”. Sometimes the most precious things are worth fighting for, and the best moments are the ones that come only by struggle.

We promised the guys from our Tuesday Night group that we’d take them on a trip somewhere, and honestly, this past weekend was the only one where I was free to take them. The following weekend I had to work, and the weekend after was Orthodox Easter, and then, off to the USA… Elly and I were planning this trip together, until, well… he kinda went off and became a priest :) So Junae, Elly’s bro, and another friend, Kimani, were the ones who saved the day, and the three of us planned for this trip together.

Friday night, Junae came over to plan some loose ends, when it started to rain, and when I say rain, I mean drops the size of melons, fell from the sky in obscene amounts. And not the kind of obscene that makes many eyes widen in a backdrop of “right on!” and “did you see that?”.... think Janet Jackson, Superbowl half-time show…. no it’s not that kind, at all! It’s the kind of over-the-top behavior that illicits responses like “are you serious?” It’s that Howard Stern episode you remember thinking “that just aint right.” That’s the kind of rain that was happening that night…. and within minutes the entire parking lot was totally flooded, and it hit me… What if it rains tomorrow? I mean, it was the rainy season, yes… but why the possibility of rain didn’t hit me until the night before the trip I didn’t know. I think the idea of rain got lost somewhere in between the 18 hours a day of PHP coding and tryin to find a decent orthopedic doctor to help fix my busted shoulder (yes, another injury).

I call Jamaica, and we agree that if it rains, we’ll cancel the trip and plan on a weekday sometime. Ok, back-up plan is set.

It’s Saturday morning, I wake up and I look outside, and the weather is beautiful. There’s evidence of moisture on all the windows, and a nice early morning fog on the ground, but birds are chirping and the sun is beaming down as strong as it ever was! And I tell Junae, “Bro! The weather’s perfect!” and we head outside to meet our friends to head out to Kiambuu…

When my alarm clock rings, and I realize, that it was just a dream… one of those cosmic middle-fingers was pointed right at me when I looked out my window, crusty-eyed, to see that the deluge had continued into morning, and it was raining as strong as it was the night before. All I could say at that moment was an honest and brooding… “shit!” A strange hatred came over me. A hatred for oxygen, especially when it paired up with two hydrogens… yes, water… WATER… 70% of me, and you, and everyone we know… It wasn’t about anything else, but the fact that, I really wanted to give these guys a day away from life, and the troubles, and the cops…. Maybe it wasn’t mine to give…. I just wanted to give them something.

So I called Jamaica, to initiate back-up plan “RAIN DAY” when he’s like “Paul, everyone left a while ago, they should be there any minute.” Now didn’t I say to wait till I called to confirm? CRAP! Now you have to understand, it’s not like these guys can just go home… They came on foot, in the rain…. We had to do something when they arrived.

And sure enough, there were 4 of the guys at the gate, waiting, excited, soaked “PABLO!” The excitement in their eyes was yet another cosmic kick in the balls… how was I to tell them that their ticket out of Nairobi was cancelled until further notice?? “Habari zenu… Mambo!” “Vipi” “Sema” “Poa-poa” “Uko Fresh?” “Freshi-Kabeeeeza” In moments like these you extend the greetings and try to think of as many ways to say “how are you” as possible.

“It’s raining, guys – dunno if we’re gonna do it today…. may need to postpone”

I’m not good with guilt… seriously, I can’t do it. But it was beyond guilt. I saw “another broken promise”... but it was a serious lesson to be learned, because, Pauly don’t control the weather. Pauly has every intention of followin through with this. Pauly had to stand his ground.

I am Pauly’s need correct all wrongs.

The rest of the guys showed up and we got together in the center, we made some tea, and we had a meeting. The topic at hand: “It’s pouring like crazy, what do we do?” Junae and I tried to explain it every way possible. “If we go there in the rain, we’ll be in the bus the whole time, let’s just save it for another time where it’s sunny.”

And the responses stayed consistant: “What rain?” “There’s no rain!” “I love the rain” “Let’s go today!” “Rain is a blessing from God.” (like G.W. Bush, he had to throw the religion card)... We went back and forth for like 30 minutes, until Junae and I finally just gave up… “Ok we will go, but I don’t wanna hear ‘we can’t do this cuz it’s raining’... we will do EVERY LAST THING the park has to offer, no matter what… Sawa?” “SAWA!”

And we were off Except… we couldn’t leave…

Apparently someone who worked at the mission took it upon themselves to go over my head and tell some of the administrators that our trip was rained out, and therefore we didn’t need lunch, or our driver.

We were stranded in the rain, no food, no driver…. with 16 youth and young adults… who had just been PUMPED UP to go on a trip.

“Amira, where is the driver”. “Someone told me you didn’t need the driver anymore, so I sent him to do a few errands.”
“Olga, where’s the food?” “Yea, the food is gonna be used for something else, since someone told us you guys didn’t need it anymore.”

Are you kidding me???????

“Paul, is our trip cancelled?” “No, guys… it is not” “Where’s the driver” “Well, there’s been a miscommunication…”

“Amira, when’s Peter coming back?” “Oh 10 minutes, he’ll be back so soon, he’s on his way”

45 minutes later

“When’s Peter coming back?” “In half an hour – he’s on his way. Twenty minutes.”

45 minutes later

You can only do so much to kill time… play some guitar, get out a soccer ball, tell a few jokes.

“Paul, the guys are losing hope.”

So I went to each guy, and put my arm around each one and asked “Are you losing hope?” “Do you still believe, we’ll make it to Kiambu” It’s amazing how these kinds of questions easily restore any hope that’s lost. Frowns turned to smiles. I felt like an Emcee at one of those talk show studio audiences…

I am Pauly’s sense of corporate responsibility.

As the morning dragged on, the rain started to taper off, and then a slight drizzle, became a cool mist, and then… dry…. followed by, the sun? What the heck? Forecast called for rain straight until Sunday.

And then the car arrived? Has the cosmic middle finger been retracted and exchanged for some cosmic spooning? I think so! In a few minutes we were loading up the bus! Until one of the guys tugs my sleeve “Paul, I will not go, if we use this bus, it is too small.” I pretty much told him he could stay behind. Sorry we couldn’t provide the stretch hummer. A minute later he was on the bus with the rest, and we were off to Kiambu!!

Within the hour, we were there, climbing up a bumpy dirt road through the farmlands of central province. “Paradise Lost (arrow) 2KM – VERY CLOSE!” We payed the admission fee, parked the car, did a group huddle, and we were off on our first adventure,

The Hike

It barely hit me that we were actually there, after the events of that morning. But nonetheless, we’d arrived, and it was as if nothing happened, as if there was no struggle, because we’d made it, but the struggle it took to get here, made it that much more sweeter. Carefree is a natural result of such a morning followed by acheived goals. We hiked up this tiny mountain, through forest, leaves, twigs, branches, mud, bends, crawl-spaces to emerge in back of a waterfall!! We stopped here for a moment just to soak it in. We definitly had arrived, and this was definitly our paradise lost. “PARADISE LOST” was a phrase you heard around you…. Junae lead us in a prayer in back of this waterfall, and after it was done, we decided, we would go into the caves.

Behind this waterfall were a few caves, which didn’t seem like anything important to me at the time, but after some web-research today on google, I found out someting very different. It turns out that these caves were discovered in 1996 by the owner of Paradise Lost and some of his workers. He lead them in a mini archaelogical dig, and discovered obsidian artifacts dating back to the Late Stone Age, over 2.5 million years ago. It has since been discovered to be part of a larger network of caves, among those where the some of oldest human remains have been found. In this particular cave, human remains dating back to 12,000 years ago have been found. Yet on Saturday, it was just a means to get a thrill going among the guys. Check out these articles I found:

A briefing on the caves

Daily Nation on the Web

It was dark, wet, and it seemed to be goin forever. Whenever we hit a dead end, I lit a match to show me where to turn, and we continued on hands and knees, in about 6 inches of cold water.

We felt like the Goonies… except I was the only one who knew who the Goonies were.

After hittin an obvious dead end, everyone seemed a bit uneasy, so we turned around and came out the other end. There was something really slimy about that cave. Probably was the 12,000 year old human remains, come to think of it. Out the other end, we took a few photos and continued on our hike. The rains made the hike significantly more dangerous than it had been if it was dry. Rocks, mud, slippery, gooey, jagged, thorns… Yet we kept goin, and goin, and goin.

It was awesome seeing the guys help each other, wait for each other. There was that perfect balance of anxiousness and patience! When one slipped, the other lent a hand, and so on, and so on….

But of course, where there’s a bench, everyone’s gotta stop for a few snaps….


To be continued…

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Test THIS

Monday, April 3rd, 2006… Testing has begun.

Let’s take a look at a typical testing schedule here:

8:00 AM - No one shows up
8:30AM – Equipment failure
9:00AM – Team shows up.
9:12 AM - Power goes out
9:17 AM - Finding the electrician to connect the generator to the building where our office is.
9:35 AM - Learning why the electrician cannot connect the generator because only one building can be connected to the generator at a time, and since I guess people’s lives are more important, the generator must remain connected to the hospital
10:00 AM - Introductory Meeting
10:01 AM - Meeting interrupted momentarily to celebrate the return of power.
10:15 AM - Hang up sign asking people to stay out of the testing room, and to refrain from disconnecting the machines in order to test new equipment
10:17 AM - Testing interrupted because gentleman wants to know if he can use the room to disconnect machines in order to test new equpment
10:17 AM - Sign is explained
11:00AM – Testing begins.
11:01 AM - Fill out myspace survey so my 90+ contacts can know who my first crush was.
11:05 AM - Now: Fixing bugs

My culture has taught me to be a perfectionist. It’s not done, until it’s perfect. There’s no such thing as “almost”, can someone be “almost pregnant?” If it can’t be done the first time, it’s not worth doing… etc. Apparently the pyramids were a one shot deal. So after many years in the business, I’ve learned to accept the fact that a system can and WILL have a certain amount of imperfections, or “bugs” as they’re called.

But even after being a software developer for the last 6+ years, when I get a bug, there’s that small part of me, depending on how much sleep I’ve had the night before, that takes it personally, only because, well, that’s how I was brought up, culturally. Sometimes I wanna shout back, “What do you mean the list isn’t sorting properly???” The fact that I can take constructive criticism, given my background, is a miracle, and a testament to the American education system.

Building a House of His Own

Elly Ojijo Ndolo… I have known this man since 1999, and he’s been a great friend of mine. He’s definitly one of my best friends here in Kenya… someone I can just talk to and feel totally at home with. He has this natural ability to lead people. He doesnt need to convince, or force, or control – he’s just himself… he’s humble, he loves, he cares, and he’s wise and strong… bam – the perfect combo for a good leader.

On Sunday it was announced that Elly was to be ordained as the priest and pastor of a church in Tanzania. After the service we had a get together at the house of Fr. Moses with the old crew… as i looked around the room, i saw faces, who were just kids when i came in 1999, and new faces, new generation since then… all together, singing songs in Elly’s native language- – Luo – from the Jaluo people in the west….


Ngima Lomba (Ewan Watio)
Ngima Lomba, ngima polo lomba
Ewan watio, Nengima!!

You know what, just listen to it… CLICK HERE




Elly and his wife Pendo, at the annoucnement





Emmanuel, confused?




Crackdowns, Creation, Clenched fists…

As time is goin by, I’m definitly getting more attached to the guys I serve and meet with every tuesday. It’s gonna be really hard to say bye in a few weeks. Life’s getting a bit more complicated for these guys. Police crackdowns in Kibera is making it almost impossible for people on the fringes to just get by. Police here are looking to make money, and to make trouble. They need to make their fellow Kenyan smaller in order for themselves to feel bigger…. it’s atrocious… and the harassment a lot of our guys face scares them, and us. We have to move our meetings earlier so they can get here and back to Kibera before the nightly rounds, where cops will look for a bribe, or throw in jail. we promised them a day away from the city… Lake Naivasha – which actually happened today (Saturday)

To be honest i’ve been writing this out over the course of a week, cuz it’s just been so busy around these parts.

But the story of our trip will come in a later blog… but i got some great pics, some stories, yea!

Anyway back to last tuesday.. Elly – it was his last day here, in Nairobi – he has been a part of this church for decades, and that night, he was to depart, and no longer return as Elly, but to return as Father Joshua. The guys were really sad, and made Elly a poster for him to remember them by, each one of us signed it…. i also made my contribution, as you can tell, of a little cat chasing a dog: Everyone did their thing:


We talked about symbols, how symbols represent ideas, beliefs, places, people. There’s the world famous, cross, crescent moon, and star of david, the pillars of monotheism…. there’s the don’t walk sign….. the artist formarly known as prince…. I asked them, “if someone were to make a symbol for you guys.. this group… what would it have to express?”

and they came up with this list:

Unity
God
Peace
Sharing
Love

That sounds about right:


My massai friend Robert snapped this one of us candidly, i’m very glad he did.

We said bye to Elly, knowing one day our paths will all cross agian, though unforutnately, my time will be up here before Elly returns from Egypt.

Father Joshua… best of luck, brother!!

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