Kenya Trip Report – Fr. John

Below is an email from Kenya written by Fr. John. A more comprehensive report will be posted when the Glenstal group returns.
The kenya trip is particularly good. So much to say. First, the camp area is rustic and remote, We live in tents but get great food. Some British, Oxford, people  around and it is a good Kenyan subcultural. We are in the middle of nowhere; about an hour rough road from Magadi near the Tanzanian border. Very dry, arid. 
Secondly, my ‘Kenya crew’ is very good. All six  are eager and willing and competent workers. They love  working with the children in conversational English grouplets, IT skills (Word, Excel, Paint, Presentation). We brought 14 good computers and have been able to initiate a contact with Camara’s office in Mombasa to supply more.  Also we have been introducing Chess  etc. The school itself is ‘the pits’, very poor. Goats walking around, no water, awful classrooms until we supplied 12000 euro for renovations, no kitchen and the grounds are full of rocks. Terrible latrines. Anyway the days are very satisfying because we all like the work. In the evenings we ‘crash out’ in Lale’enok Resource center (good  website) and swim in a local river. Last night one of my number had his 18th birthday and we had Maasai party. Ie; a freshly killed and cooked goat for the occasion, a cake, Maasai dance and song around a campfire,etc. The Irish were nonetheless the best singers amongst locals, some US and UK university students! Thirdly, we do a few trips  in the area.  Haven’t seen any elephants yet, but yes to lions, giraffe, wilderbeest, impala, lots of zebra, etc. Abundance of bird life; one girl from the Oregon doing PhD on same for some months here. Next Saturday we’ll head to a hike to a waterfall on some ‘escarpment’ where we can swim etc. The boys appreciate my saying mass in the open, under an acacia tree. Various ‘strays’ gather around us!
This connection was made through a former student of Glenstal who is half Kenyan and whom I taught. He  is a remarkable environmentalist and just  about to start doing a doctoral degree on ecodiversity and animal/human habitat sharing. 
Strange animal noises around my tent as I write this in the dark,
Best wishes, Fr. John
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