On arrival at Nairobi airport we had a tour of the international terminal, which saw some of the biggest eyes ever seen, especially when the children watched a British Airways Jumbo Jet take off, and when they travelled up an escalator.
Two churches’, Salem Chapel (near Bath) and Ridgeway Church (in Wallingford), gave us money explicitly for a special treat for the children. Jim Dawe wanted to give them something really special, so he came up with the ultimate treat – to take them all on an airplane journey from Kisumu to Nairobi and the return journey by coach.
A trip had already been organised for a visit to the airport for Monday 7 April 2003 as mainly an educational tour, but Jim had managed to arrange with ‘Eagle Air’ for the children to see inside the airplane. The children were all looking forward to this visit, and the added knowledge of the real thing the next day, made the day even more exciting.
On Tuesday the 8 April we travelled in two matatus (mini buses) the approximate 3½ miles to Kisumu Airport (old terminal), arriving at 7 am. We boarded the 70 seater jet an hour later in readiness for the 30-minute flight to Nairobi. Just before taking off, Geoffrey decided he would need to stock up with sick bags, which was very fortunate!
We then waited for our hired coach that was to take everyone on a tour of Nairobi City: seeing Parliament, the American Embassy bomb-site, the stadium, and all those tall buildings that they had never seen before.
At 11 am we boarded the coach and set off. The thing that amused the children the most was the traffic jams and the traffic lights, which they talked about for some time afterwards.
After the tour of Nairobi City we began the six-hour journey back to Kanyawegi Children’s Home, stopping to view the Rift Valley and the tea plantations, plus some unscheduled stops to empty more sick bags!
Unfortunately, Brian had acute malaria and was unable to go on the trip.