I was fortunate enough to be greeted by Diane Bricker, World Concern’s former Africa Director, who now lives in Seattle but happens to be spending these two weeks in Kenya. It’s always comforting to be greeted by a familiar face.
Though I have yet to meet my roommate (she has been working in South Sudan and tends to do most of her work in the field), I spent my first few nights with two incredible German women who have spent years working with World Concern in Somalia. Again, another comfort and Godsend. I think God knew I needed some company during this period of initial adjustment (and overcoming horrible jet lag!!). Slowly but surely, I’m learning the ropes of living the Kenya city life – everything from turning on the water heater 30 minutes before showering (though, do not always expect hot water) to bargaining for avocados and bed frames. Having spent 5 months in Uganda, I naively assumed I would not have too much cultural adjustment to endure. I failed to remember that though there may be cultural similarities, I am in an entirely new country and a HUGE city. A moment of perspective: getting lost on foot leads to discovering normally bypassed gems (fresh fruit markets, local restaurants, bicycle shops, etc). Let’s just say, in my first week, I’ve only been lost a handful of times…
The Wednesday after flying into Nairobi, I began orientation at the World Concern office.
MY GOODNESS THESE PEOPLE ARE AMAZING. After only three days, I already feel that I am growing to be a part of the World Concern Nairobi family.
Everyone has been incredibly kind, warm, and patient (this is because I ask questions. A lot of them.). Though I’m included as a member of the family, I do know that it will take some time for me to find my role in daily office life. But the opportunities abound!
Until my first field visit, I will be finishing up orientation, settling into my lovely spacious apartment, registering for a couple of trainings, working on my Swahili (I’m determined, folks!), and doing my best to continue to familiarize myself with World Concern Africa and the city of Nairobi- my new home!