Good evening and welcome to another exciting addition of the Maseno Minute! We’re coming to you a little later this Monday, so hopefully you are not sipping on coffee. Maybe tonight you have hot apple cider or some of that caffein-free herbal tea you stole from your mom’s pantry on your last trip home. Whatever it is you have in your cup, though, we hope it’s good.
This week’s Maseno Minute is taking you back to Jemo House. As you may know, Jemo House is home to 14 amazing kids, and we want to help you get to know each one of them. Though they have all come to Jemo House from unique backgrounds, we won’t be spending a lot of time on that–we would rather tell you about who the kids are now.
Because “who they are now” is pretty awesome.
TLC’s founder, Jess, first met Arnold when she was working at a hospital in Maseno. At the time, Arnold was a chubby-cheeked baby who scowled at every nurse and Doctor who came within his 5-foot radius. Jess remembers Arnold in the hospital, scowling at her with a look of deep and incomprehensible vengeance on his face while ugali–a white, staple grain in Kenya–dripped from the curve of his cheeks. Though he now manages to keep his food off of his face, he still has one of the most mischievous and devious smiles this world has ever seen.
Now Arnold is in the second grade. He is extremely athletic, and loves jumping, flipping, soccer, and the more original game of holding a string while running downhill and making others jump over said string. We applaud Arnold for his daring creativity.
Despite his incessant movement, Arnold has a strict aversion to shoes. He is always barefoot and has remained unaffected by his frequent run-ins with the two-inch thorns that frequent the grass in the Maseno.
We, here at TLC, have loved watching Arnold grow from an ugali-faced baby into a barefoot second-grader. We are excited to see him grow into an adult at Jemo House and, shoes or no shoes, we are proud to call Arnold ours.
We hope you have had a great Monday, and we hope you are settling into a soft couch or warm bed, excited for tomorrow. We also hope you can learn something from Arnold and all of the kids at Jemo House: they are all with us because they came from something not very great, but they don’t let those not very great things define them. They are not their yesterdays. And neither are you.
From all of us here at TLC, take a deep breath, finish your apple cider, and have your best week yet.
(In the photo, Arnold is on the far left.