Mr. Fix It


If someone wants to test his resourcefulness at being handy - whether as a mechanic, plumber, electrician, or other - I challenge him to come to Kenya and take a stab at it! I was feeling pretty confident myself after recently reinforcing our perimeter fence so our dog won’t make his way into the neighbor’s yard. Well, in typical Kenyan fashion, my confidence in the way things were going didn’t last long.

After coming off my handyman high from the fence, I was fairly certain that fixing two leaking sinks wasn’t going to be a problem - until it was. After four bumpy trips to the hardware store, including one by our carpenter who happened to be finishing up some unrelated work, and a few incorrect parts I am still left with a couple of leaking sinks. It’s not so much that I don’t know how to fix the leak as it is the circumstances of the leak itself. Mind you, the house is apparently one of the original colonial homes on the block. Additionally, it appears the plumber who preceded me also felt the need to test his resourcefulness by using miscellaneous, unmatching pipe fittings and what appears to be some plastic bag as a caulking agent, all of which got me asking, “what in the world is this?”

After a two minute bout of self-pity, Rheanna snapped me back to reality and reminded me that we are, after all, living in Kenya. So while every part of the situation may not make sense, it actually does - given the cultural context. If you haven’t picked it up by now, Murphy’s Law reaches another level here, and we’ve found that the only way to “cope” is by nervously chuckling “it is what it is.” There are many aspects of our typical day reminding us that we’re not in Kansas (I mean, California) anymore, which really does give us an appreciation for living here and feeling so fortunate that we get to experience life in another country - even if it means still having to call a plumber.