On October 9th, we started our journey from Kampala to Nairobi, Kenya. Terrill is attending a six-week tone workshop led by Keith Snider, an SIL expert in the field. We brought our Ik language helper, Longoli Philip, along to help Terrill analyze the tone system. They're collecting words and whistling the tones to find patterns. Eventually, they hope to incorporate tone into the Ik writing system.
The journey from Kampala to Nairobi took about 12 hours of driving. We thank God for the well-maintained tarmac roads that made traveling a pleasure (for a change). The highlight of the journey was seeing the Kenya tea plantations around a place called Kericho. Bright green leaves are picked from the top of the plants and stuffed into sacks. Then the sacks are hauled off to the factory on a near-by hill where the tea is packaged.
We're staying just south of Nairobi in a suburb known as Karen. Our SIL friends, Tom & Juanita Matthews, live here and have graciously allowed us to stay with them for the coming weeks. Already they've blessed us with hospitality and 'old school' missionary wisdom. Every day, we head to the NEGST campus where the workshop is being held.
One thing I've come to love about Karen are the tree-lined roads. Flowers are blooming and emitting sweet smells, a light wind is blowing and a feeling of serenity surrounds me as I walk from the Matthew's house to campus. I get my morning exercise by walking to school...about 5 kilometers. Terrill gets his afternoon exercise by walking home while I take the car.
The workshop starts at 8:15 am and Terrill attends class in the morning. By the afternoon, it's time for eliciting words from Philip and studying the tone. This is the building where they're meeting.
I couldn't leave out the cafeteria because we spend a good deal of time here. At morning break, we enjoy mandazis (doughnuts) or samosas (meat filled pastries) and tea. For lunch, we enjoy the beans, rice, cabbage, chipatis & hot dogs. The cafeteria also helps our social life by providing opportunity to mingle with other students.
We'll be in Karen until November 20th. It's nice to have a break in our routine and be back on a campus. It's provides renewed perspective.