It is hot, and I feel tired after our visit to the market place. But my morning is not yet over; there is so much they want to show me. We pile back into the car and drive to another of the St. Peter’s Lifeline schools near another church.
A line of six classrooms with a blue roof is outlined against the hills. The place is strangely quiet and devoid of children, as it is half-term.
We return to the presbytery for a soft drink and snacks, chapati and sweet potato slices, before going out again to a government school this time. It is not half-term here, and the school lunch program is in full swing. Orderly queues of hungry children receive large scoops of cooked maize and beans in their plastic containers. It smells delicious. I dip my fingers in for a taste and jump back, to the amusement of the children. It is piping hot.
We return to the presbytery for lunch, a repetition of the day before, except the vegetable stew is accompanied by tasty chips instead of rice; and the chapatis are as good as ever. I have another afternoon nap and shower in the comparative luxury of the Eco Lodge. There is a waste basket awaiting me on the patio of my room, and no music blares from the public rooms this time.
Father Frankline takes me out in the early evening in his battered Hi-lux with a faulty starter. We see another two schools and go on a rough ride past areas of high grass belonging to absentee landowners – a richer section of the community.
We drive past a game of soccer on a dirt pitch, lined with serious spectators.
“They don’t understand the game,” he says when I remark on the silence. But as we turn away, a great roar comes from the crowd. “Must’ve been a goal!”
Beyond the pitch is an area of irrigated tomatoes and maize. An oasis of green in the dry, dusty land. Water is pumped into a large new tank from a river which never dries. It is another St. Peter’s project and they feel blessed.