A public holiday unexpectedly called, plans hastily reshuffled and a trip an hour out of Kisumu to a university.
30 university students, a handful of cricketers but the majority just curious.
A game gets started – drip feeding information in about the game and how it’s played.
There’s enthusiasm for some coach education. Close catching first, introducing the coaching method, then 3 key points each for batting, bowling and fielding.
2 hours later, we’ve got a full fledged 10-over game on the go, WhatsApp groups are formed, plans for training as a team and delivering outreach cricket in local schools are being made, CWB’s HIV awareness messages being discussed.
Public holidays aren’t exactly lemons, but we certainly made lemonade out of today – living the CWB value of adaptability, seizing the opportunity and leaving 30 new keen and enthusiastic coaches to the good.
We were greeted by monkeys at our first school of the day next to the university. And while we awaited the kids we took lunch – live termites which I have to admit, having plucked up the courage to put something alive into my mouth, didn’t taste too bad at all!
We played rapid fire with groups varying between 25 and 100 as many stragglers arrived late. A last ball finish on my pitch ensured an exciting conclusion prior to Niko’s standard engaging closing covering off our continual message of A-B-C-T.
Before heading off for the orphanage we played cricket across the equator, with the bowler bowling from the Southern Hemisphere to the batsman in the Northern Hemisphere!
Part of my grumpy old man persona rages against those inflatable clackers people bash at 20/20 both for the noise and the fact they are always five sets of kids trying to outdo themselves. However today at an orphanage in Kisumu they became a source of fun, smiles and as you will see below an almost perfect photo frame.
My volunteering with CWB has many coaching highlights, some powerful HIV messaging, (and I’m still shouting ‘condom’ at regular intervals) but the visit we make to orphanages reminds us all of how fortunate and privileged we are especially as we will walk away leaving our gifts practical this year, cooking oil, flour, toilet rolls and a bag a t shirts.
We also left some plastics bats and a ball, so perhaps a new Kenyan cricketer will emerge.
A personal note from Sara: I found out today through one of our many CWB WhatsApp groups that Oluma Obil Patrick passed away last month with malaria. A startling reminder of the fragility of our lives but particularly in the places we so often work. I want to pay tribute to him here, and thank him for all he has done both knowingly and unknowingly to inspire me, and many others, to continue to use cricket for good. Those who don’t know Patrick should read this post from 2015, and make sure you follow the link to the video within.
Rest well Patrick, I’m raising a glass of Bond 7 to you now.