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Monday, June 6, 2011

Day 29 Kakamega June 6, 2011


Today Hezron picked me up at the guest house and we took a ride out to see the progress on the passion fruit orchard plot.  I was thinking that the plot was going to be plowed today but once we arrived it was apparent that it had already been plowed for what looked like a few days.  I guess the widows were anxious to get this plowed so I asked the neighbor lady when they came in to plow and she told me last Wednesday.  So that means that the second plow will be either this Wednesday or Thursday.

First plowing of the passion fruit orchard plot

The widows will meet again tomorrow.  Hezron and I will have to go out and visit with them and explain that the task was not completed properly.  About 75% of the plot looks great for the first plowing but there were two fairly large spots that were not touched.  On top of that not all the mounds of red dirt and stones were completely removed.  The beautiful dark soil underneath has not been turned.  I am going to chalk this one up to the excitement and anxiety these women have for this project.  I will just have to explain to them what the plow does not do they will have to do.  Even after the plow does the second plowing the women will have to work the soil to break up the clumps and get the rows ready for the posts and seedlings.  I found some information on the chemicals needed and I have been able to finalize what I think this plot is going to cost to plant.  Our plot size is somewhere between a fifth to a quarter acre.  So my guess is that it will cost about $2000 per acre to plant passion fruit given the following costs

160 passion fruit seedlings @ 25 Ksh each = $50.00
60 support posts @ ~85 Ksh each = $63.75
60 support post holes to dig @ 25 Ksh each = $18.75
480 meters of barb wire = $38.75
300 meters of galvanized wire = $23.44
2 kilograms of U-nails = $4.50
25 fence posts @ 80 Ksh each = $25.00
25 fence post holes to dig @ 25 Ksh each = $7.81
2 plowings @ 1000 Ksh each = $25.00
Removal of dirt from plot (widows) = $25.00
Chemicals (NPK) for more first 10 months = $77.50

Total = $359.50

Today Hezron gave me some more bad news.  You remember I told you that Pastor John Omala the man that has donated the plot to the widows was invited to go to the states to attend a CFO Camp in Tennessee.  On his way over to the states his brother died and he was not able to attend the funeral.  Well today Hezron informed me that Pastor John missed the CFO Camp because he was/is in the hospital with Malaria.  To make matters worse in the United States we do not have Malaria and they had to find a doctor that could treat him.  Malaria is really horrible and it kills untold number of people especially those under 5 and the elderly.  Most everyone in Kenya has had Malaria at least once if not multiple times.  Nets are ok for sleeping but you can’t live your life under a net.  Maybe we should have sprayed the whole world before we banned DDT.  I am not sure if they rushed him to Nashville, Knoxville, or Chattanooga.  His wife says he is doing better and should recover.  I was praying he would have a memorable and enjoyable trip to the US.  But not like this.  Please pray for Pastor John so he might have at least a few good days in the states before he heads back home.  Today I took my last Larium and I need to find some more before next Monday.  The last thing I want is to come down with a nasty case of Malaria.

Also this morning Pastor Ososo called me to tell me that his sister died last night in the Huruma slum in Nairobi.  Please pray for the Pastor and his sister's family as they grieve their loss.  Here in Kenya and much of Africa life expectancies are still under 50 years old if you are fortunate enough to make it past five.  I was talking with one of the teachers today her name is Jackie at the Blessed the Blessed ECD Centre and she told me that she lost both her parents when she was really young and was brought up by her grandmother.  I would assume that this fairly common here.

Take care and God bless


PS.  Jackie is 24 years old, Christian, intelligent, cute, and has given up on finding an African husband.  She asked me if I could help her find an American husband.  I told her that not many men in America are going to pay her family any cows or goats for her hand in marriage.  For those of you that don't know custom is you must buy your wife here in Kenya.  I'll leave that up to another day. 

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