six o clockish is such a nice time for a walk. the sun is doing its slanty thing and the whole campus washes over with wind and gold. right now it’s quiet here, the school breathing slow till the students arrive in two weeks, and we scrambling madly to prepare.
we’ve been at rva eleven days now, and we’re locating our groove between all the new staff meetings and tag-along drives to pick up laundry baskets and toothpaste from nairobi. yesterday morning the boys washed and hung three loads of laundry, then we walked a half mile to the snaking dirt road of kijabe town and bought vegetables and samosas.
the campus is teeming with ‘ohi’a trees and lilikoi and a ton of other plant life that makes me feel right at home. with the exception of eucalyptus, it’s hard for me to talk plants with anyone because they know the english or swahili names, and for the life of me i can’t think of what that should be. i’m all, you know, those short trees with the hairy red flowers, and they’re like, oh! you mean the bottle brush tree.
i do not understand their aversion to hawaiian names. :)
anyhow, meet our dorm:
we are the proud soon-to-be dorm parents of the twenty one freshman boys moving into bongo dorm. (when it’s not being a drum, a bongo is an antelope sort of creature with stripes and spiraled horns. a lot of the dorms here are named after kenyan animals.)
our apartment is the upstairs part, and the dorm is downstairs, comprised of four-man bedrooms, a lounge, a bathroom, and a smallish kitchen. it’s a lot of dark varnish and cinderblock–picture more camp and less dorm, and you’ll have the right idea. i’m really hoping i’ll get to paint a few walls and remake curtains before the boys arrive, just to make it all a bit sprucier and like home.
(our guys will also spend a good part of their free time in our apartment, we hope, though if our innate coolness is not enough of a draw, i’m not above bribing them with popcorn and chai.)
this week we have language courses every day, which is meant to jump-start us into swahili. when you think of us, please pray that God will loosen our tongues and wire our thinkers to have an affinity for language learning. once the school year starts we will have limited time to work on language, and we need every minute to stick.
the week after is three days of all-staff meetings, then the new students arrive, followed by the whole school. we’ll be in both dorm parent and teacher meetings, since todd is also teaching two periods of senior bible and i have a class of eighth grade art. (dear eighth graders: i apologize in advance for the pottery section, though hopefully you shall gain confidence by so brightly outshining your teacher.)
i have so, so much i want to tell you guys, but mostly i was walking the school grounds with lauren last night and i thought: just this. i wish i could just take a quiet walk with you all, one by one.
we miss you, and also we’re so glad for the chance to be here.
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ps loved these words this morning:
we are the broken, You are the healer
Jesus, redeemer, mighty to save
You are the love song we’ll sing forever
bowing before You, blessing Your name