As I mentioned previously, today we were to go to the Ranch Council meeting at 9 AM (Joseph is the Chariman) and then to a wedding at 10:30 AM. Here’s how the morning went:
8:05 I come for breakfast
8:10 Have tea; Franco, Paulo, and Joseph go to work in the Shamba (garden)
8:25 I have my second cup of tea
8:40 I join them in the shamba to plant beans
9:01 I start my fifth row of beans
9:10 I sit down, soap up my hands, and try to get my bangles on
(Notice that we are already ten minutes past meeting time)
9:15 I lay in bed and write; Franco bathes; Joseph visits with a neighbor
9:30 I get dressed
9:35 Have another tea and one chapati
9:40 We leave the house
9:45 We stop at Francis’ to chat
9:50 Stop at another house; I see a Kenyan midget
9:55 Stop at someone else’s house
10:05 We see someone walking and stop to talk to them
10:20 I learn the meeting is no longer happening because the members aren’t there. (They were probably there an hour and 20 minutes ago when It was supposed to start)
10:35 We’re sitting in town talking to a shop owner
(Five minutes past wedding time)
10:45 I learn the couple isn’t there yet
11:01 We go to another pastor’s home for my fourth cup of tea
11:30 The bride arrives at church (how we found out I have no idea)
11:45 We arrive late, of course
See…scheduled times mean nothing here, even for church on a Sunday.
The wedding was interesting. About four different phones went off, one multiple times, and one was the grooms. Children all sat on one side and adults on the other. I had my own special seat on the front row–benefits of being white. All the preachers in town were in attendance, or at least I hope they were because if not they may outnumber ordinary citizens. The preacher also gave a sermon which took just a few minutes shy of an hour. I seriously almost fell asleep five times, partly because I had no idea what he was saying or why… I don’t really know what to say about the wedding without seeming like a douche. How about you ask questions and I’ll reply!
Following the ceremony we walked to the reception at the family home. I got to sit under the tent with all the pastors and a few very well put together women. Lunch was provided and included rice, potato, and goat. I’m a vegetarian here in Kenya. I just can’t bring myself to eat it, especially goat. The other night I was given the stomach and intestines so I handed it to the child next to me. Believe it or not, the inner organs are more expensive than the meat itself here.
Once it started raining, I was pushed into a five passenger car with 15 other people by Joseph. I’m not even exaggerating; we were packed in like sardines. It honestly was kind of painful.
While waiting for the rain to stop, I had my fifth and sixth tea in a shop owned by one of the area chiefs family. This huge person walked in and I couldn’t tell if it was a man or a woman so I asked… It was a man and he’s apparently a famous gospel singer. As soon as I asked, the chief ran and found his CD and played it for me.
It finally stopped raining and we walked home and have just been doing the usual since being here. Tomorrow I am going to the church Alpha and his family attends–the Anglican Church of Kenya; it’s where the wedding was today.