Catching Up

Last Saturday Endulen, the mission I left to begin work at Olbalblal, welcomed me for a “farewell” celebration. OleMaporo, Olondooki, Sinyati and Noonkera, two elders and two women from here at Olbalbal accompanied me. It was a great celebration where I got a chance to meet a lot of old friends. Among other things, a whole goat was roasted. The day brought home the realization that living with a community of people for over 25 years brought so much more to me than I was able to give.

Sikona appeared before the community elders of Olbalbal and asked to explain why her goats were regularly breaking up math classes, a subject that is so important to our Maasai kids. She couldn’t and was fined $8 dollars and made to promise to keep her four footed friends away from the classroom.

The two victims of the leopard attack are out of the hospital and recovering from their ordeal at home. One remarked that the next time a leopard wants my goat; he or she is welcome to it.

We are getting plenty of heavy clouds here and even a brief sprinkle from time to time. The big rains couldn’t be too far off. The winds are wild here, threating to carry off everything that isn’t nailed down. My fold up solar panel almost became a victim.

Olkitok, an elder living in the boma next door to me, got a phone call from Kenya that his son was poisoned and died. The caller was anonymous and no location where it happened in Kenya was given in the phone message. The family is in mourning for the young elder who left two wives and a number of children. He was Olkitok’s only son and the mainstay of the family that has few cattle. Olkitok is old and the family is now in danger of breaking up. Family and clan elders from the area have been meeting with Olkitok every day of this past week to figure out the future. I’ve gone twice with groups to sit with the family.

Some time ago I mentioned that the Maasai have constructed a barrier, like a line of scarecrows to stop the wildebeest from grazing near their villages. When the rains begin the wildebeests will give birth and the cows love to eat the afterbirths that make them sick. I include a picture here of the barrier.


2 thoughts on “Catching Up”

  1. Those scarecrows look like individual flags – what a great way to keep the wildebeest away.  Hope it works.

  2. Yes Martha, that is pretty much what they are, sticks with old peices of cloth or sacking tied to them. The wildebeest haven’t arrived yet. We had our first good rain this afternoon. When the wildebeest migration begins to show up, I wonder if I’ll being taking a picture of the herds of migrating animals on one side of the “barrier”. I’ll keep you posted on developments.

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