For those of you who have never lived outside of your native-English-speaking country, you may not be aware that there is a significant difference in the various "brands" of English.
Today I visited one of my favorite spots in Nairobi. As I was leaving, the staffer said, "Don't get so lost." In America, that phrase would result in the other party saying, "Huh?!"
What the other person meant was, "Don't wait so long before you return next time!"
And that is the very reason why I am in the line of work I'm in - assisting Bible translation. You can imagine that some critical concepts would not translate even within the different brands of English, to those who don't know both "languages."
An American in Ghana reminded me of how easy it is for an American in Kenya to get a driver's license in Kenya. All that's needed is an International Driver's License, which can be obtained via any AAA office. Upon presentation of the International License and paying the fee, you are given a temp license. Then the real thing arrives in the mail about a month later.
Our problem is that before leaving the States, we forgot the part about having an International Driver's License. Then I remembered the reciprocal agreement with the UK - where those holding a UK license can get a Kenyan license. We had UK licenses - but they were back in the States. Through a very complicated process, our friend Seana sent us our UK licenses, and we were on the road.
Like so many other things here, the drivers licenses are hand-made. You'll note the handwriting on the paper parts of the license. And they look pretty bad after they ta…
We leave Kenya tonight right before midnight. We have lived here for just over two years - and not left East Africa during that time.
So why do I refer to Kenya as "This Glorious Chaos"? Well, it's glorious here - and very chaotic.
I know that some of the readers out there might object to Kenya being called chaotic. Well, don't be. Nairobi, at least, has lots of chaos. Just get in a car and drive across town!
And the glory? Oh, it's all over the place. Smiles on so many faces. Laughter as I pass roadside shops. Beautiful amazing random artwork on ceramic pots for sale along Ngong Road. Flowers on almost every plant, year around.
So you should come to Africa. Not just to visit - but to live. Then you can really see what life is like. We tried - two years is not long enough. We were compelled to return to our home, America. Those of you who know us understand why. Those who don't - well, you'll just have to get to know us. (Mov…