It’s Christmas Eve day and our friend and hostess, Julia is busy with all manner of preparation for the evening carol service. We explore a bit, read, nap, paint and explore some more. At one point I find myself out in the woods and I hear a loud thrashing in the trees – overhead! I look up and see a Colobus monkey has just made a huge leap from one tree top to another and is staying in the branches above me. I see movement near in another tree. I settle myself down and crane my head straight up. I stay and watch six or eight monkeys take the ‘path’ through the tree tops jumping from one tree to another, none of them falling. They are like the equivalent of five or six stories in the air. I’m in awe.
Later I find myself on a bench by the fish pond staring at the most incredible huge leaves. They look too big to be real. Yet they are so intricate, they certainly aren’t fake props. I listen as the fish prop into the depths of the pond when they are afraid of a noise. Otherwise they like sunning themselves at the pond surface. A little further on I stop to listen to a little babbling of the stream that runs through the forest near the Rondo. It’s so serene and peaceful inside the forest, and it seems so far from everything.
At 9:00 PM the chapel bell is rung. We assemble in total candle light. It’s a short service by Kenyan standards; lasting a little over an hour. I am so thankful to rehearse once again the coming of the baby Jesus who turns out to be a King. Different scriptures are read in between our carols. In the end Julia reads a story about an old lonely Russian man who meets Jesus in all his visitors on Christmas Day. It’s a lovely way to finish off the night before Christmas.