Kenya often gets a bad press.
But there are joys and laughs, wherever we are, and pleasures to savour and relish.
So, Liza is sitting sharing a simple meal of rice and vegetable stew- with local friends, and enjoying their wry humour and easy-going commentaries.
Catherine, in particular, evidences a lively sense of humour, performing wickedly accurate mimicry of certain local well-known characters, which elicits gurgles of laughter as we recognise their gestures and conversational patterns.
And then the little birds, red-cheeked cordon bleus, eager for fallen grains of rice, approach so close she can almost stroke them.
And David? The sight of an enormous blue butterfly on the wing in Cheptil, and tracking down the source of an extraordinary nocturnal sound which has long puzzled him- turns out to be Mathone Nightjar – a source of deep satisfaction.
And after both of us having preached at churches in Cheptil parish, a meaningful conversation about culture, life and the universe over a Sunday lunch with the hospitable Sang family.
Then there are jovial shouts from acquaintances as we pass by- David, helmetless as are all pillions here- on the back of a piki piki (a small motorbike) on the way into town, while Liza prefers the security of riding in a tuk tuk.
And amidst the dust, greetings from folk one has not seen for a few weeks, in Eldoret or Kapsabet towns, cordially exclaiming, “umenipotea” – meaning you have been lost to me- and slapping hands in the correct cultural fashion, enjoying the connection, living in the moment; smiles and happy recognition all round.