When people ask me about my new home in Kenya, they envision a grass and mud hut in the heart of Africa. They ask me about the school supplies they can send with me and what kinds of clothes I'll wear. My part of Africa will not be what many Americans view. I am moving to Nairobi, one of the most developed cities on the continent with over three million people, movie theaters, water park, bowling alleys, and malls that can compete with any in the U.S. I'm not "roughing" it. Although I won't have many American things available to me, I will not be completely "without". I am moving to a city three times the size of Portland. I will wear the same clothes I wear now (but fewer sweaters - YEAH!). I will have all the modern teaching conveniences available. My two roommates and I will share a three bedroom, three bath house. My part of Nairobi is well developed and established. However, there are parts of Nairobi where poverty reigns, places which have one toilet for every 10,000 people (so I've read). I will see extreme wealth and extreme poverty.
In many ways Nairobi is like any other big city in the world - skyscrapers, pollution, people, poverty, and wealth. In other ways it is not - colors, smells, time, giraffes, and safaris. Here are some pictures taken from Nairobi National Park, a game reserve that rests on the edge of the city. It's not really the type of scene we see every day in America.
I look forward to experiencing this part of Africa for myself, to see life from a different perspective, and the many ways I will change because of Africa.