Friday, July 1, 2011

A Dolly in Maruri

Armed with a dolly, we walked through the Marurui slum toward Virginia’s house. Theresa wanted to show us an example of her eco-jiko and Virginia was the first proud owner. One main path was lined on both sides with women preparing food for their one meal or with children watching the passersby. This main path was divided down the center with a river of sewage making its way downhill. Stepping back and forth across that river was necessary given that some banks were wider than others and thus more conducive for walking.

Between the iron sheet houses we snaked our way. Some of the sheets were covered in barbed wire which made passing through and not getting the skirt with too much fabric caught on the wire challenging. Other iron sheet rooftops hung at just the right height to scalp anyone who is 5’8” tall and perhaps decapitate a person taller than 6’.

I don’t take the task of giving the next dolly lightly. Children are everywhere and I always wait on the Holy Spirit to highlight a child to me. Maybe I don’t always get it right, but there is something…something about handing a doll made with such love and generosity over to the right tiny maama.

On the way to our destination I spotted two children dressed in red. These adorable kids stood out to me but I passed them by. Admittedly, I thought more about having missed the chance to give a dolly than about seeing the eco-jiko. But God is good and the two young ones were seated patiently alongside the path just watching the people pass. Mzungu in Kenya are not at all uncommon so there was no fear when I approached and crouched down. I opened my bag and pulled out the small dolly and placed her carefully in the hands of her new maama. To watch the smile emerge on these girls’ faces is a gift I would never wish to trade.