Monday, June 17, 2013

If ever so humble...

... there's no place like home!

We are officially residents of the Pangani area in Nairobi, a neighboring district to Eastleigh. We live on the third floor of the complex, that is, up two flights of stairs from ground level. According to the Kenyan builders, that would make us residents of floor number two since the ground floor is technically floor number zero.

Our home is wall-to-wall and ceiling-to-ceiling concrete. Might conjure up mental images of a prison cell if you get to carried away with that definition. Luckily, our walls are painted a happy pastel yellow with earthy red floors to mimic sunshine and fresh earth. Plus, lighter colors give the illusion of bigger rooms. ;)

Our couches and bed frame were custom made by local craftsmen! One of many differences between here and the States is that there are very few furniture chains... if you want some you just find a street shop in the area and begin discussing design and price. We took the easy way out and purchased the same design from the same artisans as another couple who work with us. I must say though, our couches are significantly softer than theirs (Kenyans like it FIRM)!
This is my first "home to myself" as a wife. I catch myself scheming and planning how to decorate the place over time, colors and textures and pinterest ideas follow me through language class and into the night.

It took us a while (or maybe I should say it took me a while; Jeff has a busier schedule than I) to clean up the apartment and get unpacked. I still have a few areas, like the highest cabinets in our bedroom, to clean (*ahem* kinda waiting for hubby to do a spider and cockroach check up there first).

We wake up each day to the Muslim Call to Prayer at 5:30. It's strange to hear the melodious voice singing in a language I don't understand. I lie in bed and say my own prayers over us and the people we are working with in the calm dark mornings.

As the day progresses the children leave for school, men head off to their jobs, and the women begin their housework. By the time we come home in the afternoon, gangs of children are running through the courtyard, solemn groups of teenagers loiter in the corner, smoke rises up from some balconies smelling of seasoned goat meat, and radio music echoes throughout the complex. Even deep into the night there are voices, music, laughter, arguments, hammering, and shuffling of feet sounding off in charming discord.

We love it here. Things are new. Things are different. It makes for challenges and battles. It also fosters opportunity and growth. We thank God for this time. We thank God for our neighbors, for our language teacher, for the adult students attending ESL classes, and for our co-workers. And we thank God for YOU!

1 comment:

  1. I like your bed, and that "coffee" table is cute!! Lol