the porous city



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Took a boda-boda (bicycle taxi) from the office to my house. It's 10 shillings (about 13 cents), 15 if they go down the dirt track to my door. Almost all the boda-boda guys have the same kind of bike: imagine a depressing Soviet-era steel bicycle with a cushion over the back wheel, festooned with paint, streamers and slogans painted on the mudflaps. Everyone pedals at the same plodding pace, since they have one gear at some ridiculous gear ratio, suitable only for Olympic sprinters.

This boda-boda driver spoke English, which is unusual.

"Hey, brother. Hey."
"How can I have an easy life?"
"How can I have an easy life? I have been given a hard life."

He laughed, grinned, and kept at his sad, slow pedalling. I don't think his smile was faked. It's amazing how happy people are here, despite everything.

Talked to one of our survey agents today about a baseline survey we do when we enroll farmers - a sort of census and inventory of assets. Apparently it's pretty quick and easy to go through with a farmer.

"They don't have problems with any of the questions?"
"No ... well, sometimes they can't remember the names of all their children."

last timestamped: 09:35:33 13-Nov-2008
in categories:OneAcreFund, People/Me





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