Last Thursday, Kendi and I had so much fun. After most of our housework was done, she became my teacher. She showed me how to make ugali. That was fun! I am one of those cooks who insists on measuring everything; Kenyan ladies never measure anything. They just pour and add until it looks/feels right. I insisted we had to measure the flour out though or I'd never be able to make it again by myself. So amidst much laughing, she humored me and measured out what she thought the amount of flour should be. It totally messed her up! Ha Ha The ugali turned out stiff! She also had difficulty stirring it high up on my stove because she is used to stirring it down low over a small charcoal stove. We had a great time together though.
Then after the ugali, I asked her to show me how to tie Brina on my back like the ladies do here with their babies. I had tried it that morning by myself over and over until Brina decided she'd had enough! Her face in the mirror looked as if she was saying, "Mommy, you have no clue what you are doing. Why don't you just give it up?" I don't give up though! So Kendi gave me another lesson. It looks so easy when she does it!
|Brina was smiling in there!|
See how she's sitting up so straight and secure looking? Now check out my attempt at it.
When I do it myself, it feels like she is falling over to one side. Looks like it too. Look at her face. Not quite as happy about it by this time! And . . .
|Mom, this is for the birds!|
There is definitely a learning curve to it! Okay, now on to my recent bloopers!
A couple of weeks ago, BJ was not here, so I paid Kendi myself. He normally just hands me the money, and I give it to her. That week it was up to me though. I could not find it in paper bills, so I ran upstairs to our change container and counted it out that way. I counted it three or four times to make sure I had it right. I gave it to her, and she went on her way.
She came back on Thursday and asked me if I knew how much I'd paid her. I told her what I thought it had been and she humbly told me that the amount had been 200 shillings short. Kendi has proven her honesty many times over, so I knew she was telling me the truth. But I also knew that I'd painstakingly counted that money out three or four times. I was so confused.
Well, last week, I found out what my problem was! BJ was again gone somewhere when the trash man came to get his fee--250 shillings. I ran inside to get 250 shillings. I handed it to him, and he quickly handed the coin back, saying he needed 250 shillings. I replied that the coin says 50 on it, but alas, it says 50 cents. No, it was not an American coin; it had the picture of a Kenyan president on it. I figured that 50 cents and 50 shillings were the same thing. I ran back in to get 50 shillings. This time I made sure the coins said shillings and not cents. I apologized and told him that I didn't realize that Kenya has cents too. All this was in Swahili, by the way. He looked at me like he didn't believe me, like I was trying to pull something over on him. He was probably thinking, "Lady, if you've been here long enough to know Swahili, then you know how our money works too." How embarrassing! BJ always handles the money; how should I know?
I later asked BJ what this 50 cent coin is for. He told me that it used to be used here in Kenya, but it is rarely used now. It is worth only half a shilling! For some reason, they are still minting them, but no one wants them. Anyway, that is how I messed up Kendi's pay too. I remember giving her a bunch of half shilling coins! Kendi and I had a good laugh over my blooper!
* Today I will make chicken stew with homemade biscuits.
And oh, by the way, the vote was unanimous in our household. We want our BLT's to stay BLT's, not all diced up as bruschetta!