10 thoughts I have regarding my impending arrival back in Canada

1. I’m really excited to see my dog, Sophie. But what if she doesn’t remember me?

I have a bad habit of sneaking in pictures of my dachshund Sophie whenever possible.

2. Will I be able to tolerate the cold when I get back? I left Canada mid-October, so the last time I saw snow or experienced sub-zero temperatures was March 2015!

I’ve been enjoying the warm weather of my six months in Kenya.

3. Am I going to experience reverse culture shock? What’s it going to be like going from Kenya to my tiny hometown in Southwestern Ontario?

4. Who is going to make me ugali back in Canada? My ugali is terrible compared to the ugali made for me by Kenyan friends throughout this journey. Maybe I can convince my supervisor to make me some when I’m back in Halifax…

One of my favourite meals: curry, sukuma wiki, and ugali.

5. Are all my souvenirs going to fit in my suitcase? Did I really have to buy so much coffee and macadamia nuts?

6. Will my relationships with my family and friends be the same? Or will things be different after being gone for almost eight months?

7. I’m going to miss the Nairobi sky so much. The sky is always blue, and the sunsets are absolutely incredible on a nightly basis.

The view from my balcony at my apartment in Nairobi.8. I can’t wait to stuff my face with kale, sweet potatoes, and brussels sprouts, all of which are either extremely hard to find or non-existent here. Oh, and bacon. A small package of bacon costs almost $10 CAD here, so needless to say, bacon has not been something I’ve indulged in very often here.

9. How am I going to keep in touch with all of the friends I’ve made here? The prospect of not seeing some of my friends again makes leaving very difficult.

My favourite little guy ever!10.  When am I going to be able to come back to Kenya again? The past six months have been a wild, crazy, amazing ride, and I can’t wait to come back soon.

Rachel Quehl – Nutritionist, Kenya