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November 2009

Endulen Diary
Vol. 24, #11
November, 2009

Lesiniga and Lingiria take a Bad Trip

In 1994 my older brother Lingiria and I found places in a land rover bound for Arusha town. I had never been out of Endulen and Lingiria was taking me to begin my studies as a carpenter at technical school. On arriving in Arusha we were dropped at the local bus stand and climbed on a small bus taking in the direction of Tengeru where my school is located. Climbing down from the bus, Lingiria decided to take a short cut to the school. We ended up hopelessly lost. Walking along the lonely path, we were joined by two robbers with macheties who forced us to go along with them. Presently, we noticed a black bag on the side of the road . My brother told the robber that we could share the money and he agreed. The thieves forced us onto and other small bus that took us to a place totally strange to us. Nearby there was a half built house in the bush. Many people came with swords and macheties. They were the friends of the theives. They did not hurt us but took all our school fees and everything else that we had. After they took everything they went away leaving us.

Graduation day ends of tears

In October Osinoni school celebrated graduation day. The day included lots of songs and dances by the students, endless speeches by local government notables, teachers and others. Finally there was the eagerly anticipated food and drink. People began to disperse and without warning the women began to cry out and throw themselves on the ground in sorrow and despair. Naishiro Karistian, a young mother, still a child herself had given birth and was losing a great deal of blood. There was no car to be had anywhere nearby to take her to the hospital and the young girl bled to death. Graduation day ended in great sorrow. Naishiro was known and liked by everyone.

Elephant attack

In the area of Mbarway some five kilometers from the mission here at Endulen, there is rich green grass and plenty of water. Three young boys, Siwandet, Konina and Oldikaiyai regularly pasture the cattle of their families there, although along with the grass is a lot of heavy bush hiding numerous wild animals. One day OleKereto, a game leged Maasai medicine man was walking there to check on his cattle herded by the three boys. He came upon an elephant who without warning changed him. With his bad leg, he could not run fast and spread eagled on the ground clutching tufts of grass for what small security they could provide. All the while yelling for help. People came running and chased the elephant away. OleKereto came through without a scratch.

Blows averted

Last week the lorry of Manu was taking people to the cattle market of Osinoni. There were ten Maasai, three mangati and one total stranger in the bed of the lorry, each paying a couple of dollars for the ride to the market. One mang’ati woman was riding in a car for the first time and she was very afraid. One Maasai woman,taking sheep oil and corn to sell at Osinoni told ther to sit on a container of rendered liquid sheep fat and hold on tight to the side of the lorry. The container broke and the oil was lost but for a couple of liters. The Maasai lady demanded that the husband of the Mangati lady pay for the oil. After some heated argument the man agreed to pay for the lost oil.

Cattle sickness causes many people to get sick

When Kalai was going around to the villages teaching at Osinoni, he met with the family of Olekatika. One of their cows had just died. They cut up the dead cow and were sharing out the meat with their neighbors. They began to eat and then they began to get sick one after another and also their neighbors began to all get sick. Everyone was saying let us call a car to get help before we all die. The hospital car came and took many people to the hospital. Many were very sick but got help in time and all recovered. It is still unclear to me what sickness caused the people to get sick.

Cattle rustling

We were herding our cattle on the rift wall near Olpiro. The cries of wamang’ati were heard in the valley. Many Wamang’ti came running. They screamed that the Maasai had stolen their cattle. And the warriors of the mang’ati took off to follow their stolen cattle. They follow the tracks a long way in the mountains. The tracks took them near the village of a medicine man, OleMangi. The police were called and came to ask Mangi if he had seen the cattle. He said no. The Mang’ati came as far as the stream of Mbarway. The warriors had weapons of every kind to make war on the Maasai. The police separated the two war parties but hatred grew between the two groups. There came a big meeting between the Maasai and Mang’ati. Endulen people were accused of taking part in the theft of the cattle. But it was discovered that a raiding party from Kenya had done the deed.

Times are a changing

Ndiyene tells the story that when they were warriors many years ago, they often hunted lions in the bush. At that time the Conservation authority was not following up on this stuff as they do now. He says that they met a lion on the plain of Osinoni. They hunted and fought with the lion for nine hours. Finally they killed the lion and sang and danced to their villages with their trophies. The warriors were met at by the girls who sang songs of praise and found milk for the triumphant warriors. After this the Ndiamama who was injured by the lion was cared for and recovered.

People know what they want

This month during the time we were going around to the villages teaching we came to Narok Soito and met with people who had not heard of the gospel. These were of the village OleSitea. We went to teach at night. I met the elders outside the village where one was preparing a spear for taking his cattle to pasture. We began to eat the news. He asked me who I was the son of and I told him. He asked what I wanted and I told him that I had come to teach the gospel at his village. The elders said that they were not ready to listen to our teaching. So we went away. One man in the village wanted to listen to us, so we went to talk with him and his family.

Problem of the most favored machine solved

At Osinoni there are four machines to grind corn. But there is just one machine that the women like. This one machine produces good flour and more than the others but it was very slow to grind and so had good points and bad points. The owners of the other machines were angry and envious that the one machine got all the business. They thought the owners of the popular machine were using witchcraft to bring people to their machine. It turns out that the good machine was using a finer screen and produced better tasting maize flour.

Till next month,
Ned

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