On May 25th 2016, I decided to take a break from ‘the world’ and take a solo trip to the wide open spaces of the North York Moors. It would be my first multi-day hike and my first experience of wild camping. After 4 days and 3 nights hiking part of the Cleveland Way National Trail, I had huge blisters, painful shoulders, a great sense of achievement, a fresh awareness of self, and some brilliant memories.
Picking myself up off the ground, brushing off as much of the dust as I could, my initial thoughts were those of embarrassment. Getting injured abroad is a worry, but this time I discovered my ability to carry on regardless, as well as the amazing services of the NHS back in the UK.
Weary of the dust and polluted air of Kibera, I was thankful to find an oasis of tranquillity just minutes from the centre of Nairobi – Karura Forest. With no wifi and no distractions, I explored the tracks and glades and submerged myself in a peaceful, natural world with just the wildlife and the distant sound of the waterfall for company.
The Kibera slum of Nairobi should be ridiculously healthy, judging by the abundance of ‘medical care’. But how safe is it really? What is the care?
I travel with a disability/medical condition, and it’s not easy. But it’s far from impossible. With the right attitude and a bit of forward planning, it’s possible to follow my heart across the globe.
Medical emergencies when I’m in a developing country like Kenya have always been a fear of mine. On Sunday it became a reality. But was it really that bad? From the fears of the illness to fears of hospital standards, there was a lot on my mind. Yet good things can always come from those difficult situations.
Time to get back to Future Stars, to see the children, to distribute Chaffinch donations, and to find out what has been happening since my last visit. Oh, and an introduction to Kiberan medical care courtesy of a rusty nail. Also, what happens when a government inspector tells children that they can’t come to school any more?