At breakfast I was kinda cranky. I was annoyed that I had to get my own cups and silverware to sit outside. I was pissed the internet was not working, even after I found out it was a country-wide outage. I was impatient with the chef who kept not making me an an omelet, even after I got it and was already full anyways. I was mad that the waitress took my drink off my table, even after I found my drink at the buffet, where I had forgotten it. Yes, this was an extra special level of crankiness. Something was wrong. I slept fine, did my morning rituals, wasn't particularly stressed about the upcoming day or anything else for that matter. I also felt profoundly full after eating less than I had the day before...but who knows maybe it was just the stars.
|Interviewing Naomi, a local elder and pastor|
No. It was not the stars. It was totally normal, though. By 1:30 or so it became very, very clear that these were all the signs that was my body was about to attempt to adjust to the food here by ridding itself of all that I consumed. Regardless of the rather extreme discomfort I was in, I felt just as extreme in my gratitude that it was today. Not yesterday stuck in a two hour (fifteen mile) car ride and not tomorrow out touring in the (minimally developed) field. My body was even kind enough to wait until after we finished an important interview and presenting ourselves at a community center staff meeting. My sweet, thoughtful body waited til lunch, when I was free to completely zone out and just try to hold it together while eating the same thing I had for breakfast, but at least I had a Stoney's ginger ale.
|So many notes.|
This leads me to the most interesting aspect of Kenyan cuisine. Not that you get to eat it with your hands, which everyone knows is my favorite. Not that it tastes great, as you would expect for exciting new equitorial foods. It is rather shockingly unvaried! I think I have tried everything already: nyama choma, sukuma wiki and ugali. Otherwise known as burnt animal, kale & onions and very dense grits. (Remind me that I owe you a photo.) Of course there are plenty of other things, but in the three Kenyan meals I have had, I was served some variation of these three things each time. This gives me some apprehension about my appetite levels for upcoming meals, post 'settling in'.