March Email: Back in Kenya

Hi everyone, I’m back in Kenya and have been for a week and a half now.  My new roommate and I actually arrived on the same day last Friday, (though he was at Tenwek most of 2009 as well).  He is an orthopedics nurse here at the hospital.  We’ve had some great evenings with the fire and reading and talking about God and service in Kenya and the future.  Food highlights so far include roasting marshmallows by our fire and making enchiladas, a feat we believe proves we are ready to actually host a meal.

One of my conscious habits in Kenya is to reply to all correspondence from the States.  I’m still emailing people back from the funeral and I will reply to yours if I haven’t already.  I really am curious about how everyone is doing and would love to continue correspondence even though I am far from all you people I love.

Please pray for my supervisor/sponsor/campus leader, Dr. Russ White.  He is having some medical problems he is getting checked out.  It has been great so far getting close to him and his family, along with the other missionaries here.

Though most missionaries have families, and so are very busy, I was able to play racquetball for the first time here in Kenya (yes we do have a court, however dilapidated).  It has been great trying to get back into the exercise routine, albeit a little difficult with the rain every afternoon/evening in this unusual “dry” season.  Sunday I climbed the to the local high point on Stephen’s (new roommate) bicycle.  The climb is about 850 ft of vertical on top of our 6600 foot elevation, but nevertheless, while I am working hard to maintain the pace, a couple kids would run next to me for most of the way.  One 10-12 (?) year old even ran with me for about two kilometers?  It was impressive, though kids next to me on a bike make me nervous as they have the tendency to say stop and seem to threaten to (or do) hold the handlebars.

On the work side of things, the building project itself is proceeding very smoothly.  At least that is my impression from checking in on them a few times a day—I have not, however, yet seen the schedule of where we want to be.  The inordinate amounts of rain give us some excuse, but that is not why I came to Kenya.  Also, please pray for our fundraising efforts for the future buildings.  The one currently under construction is one of a pair, though we don’t yet have funding for the second building.  They will house interns on campus in a location close enough that they don’t have to stay in the hospital for the entirety of their “call” shifts.

The professionalism of the contractor has left me with time to consult on other projects for the hospital.  I’m currently working with an Engineering Ministries International team doing a site plan of the hospital giving us institutional knowledge of the industrial strengths and weaknesses we have.  We further hope to increase our power generation capacity and are doing introductory studies now.  Oddly enough, I’m using my engineering skills much more in these side projects than in the mostly administrative construction management.

Finally, I have been reading a lot in my free time, but to hear about that and other details, you will have to visit the blog at ToddHelps.wordpress.com.

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