This morning I visited the Turning Point Prep class in the Kianda area of Kibera. I nearly got lost on my way though, the main dirt road that leads down into Kibera near our project is being paved to make a tarmac road. The road will cross the slum and join the newly built Southern Bypass on the other side. Buildings that lined the road have been demolished and cleared and the landmark I usually look out for to know which tiny alley to turn into is gone! Luckily my internal GPS kicked in and I found my way.
It was a chilly, damp and muddy morning and I joined the kids huddled in Prep class working on some Maths. I checked out Zawadi’s Kiswahili exercise book (because I’m not a big fan of maths) and saw some of the greetings she had been learning. I never knew there were so many ways to say hello in Kenya! It makes sense really as greetings are important in Kenya. People are more important than tasks or things and therefore a hearty greeting is a neccessity. It makes sense to have several greeting options up your sleeve, thanks to Zawadi, now I can add a few to my arsenal of salutations.
So here are a few from Zawadi’s list:
Greeting: Hujambo Response: Sijambo
Greeting: Habari Response: Nzuri
Greeting: Shikamoo Response: Marahaba
Kiswahili is one of five subjects that Zawadi is catching up on so that she can join the Fountains of Hope school in January along with her other prep classmates. Teacher Magdalene was happy to report that all the kids are on track to be ready to join school in January which is great news.
Thanks Zawadi and friends for the lesson!