Inspired Words

These are the experiences of our volunteers in Kenya.


September 5: Hello, my name is Paul…

Posted in Kenya on September 5, 2013

I consider myself to be a family man. I am a proud son, brother, husband and new father. Every Sunday I head to my parent’s house in Streetsville to sit around our family table, my childhood table, and share in the weeks adventures. I am really looking forward to my next Sunday at home because I have a lot of beautiful stories to share with my family. The first thing I will tell them is that I missed them and love them. I will then walk them through a day in which I witnessed love in a form which to this moment makes me smile. I will tell them about my new friend Paul.

Throughout our trip I have had the absolute privilege to have daily interactions with Paul. Paul is a proud Kenyan, father, husband and the best guide I have ever met. He has escorted and guided our team for the past three days and at any pause in the program, has taken his personal time to teach us about Kenya, its unbelievable people and why he calls this home.

Today Paul, who volunteered his time and scheduled break to help us shovel stones, discussed family with me. Paul is a husband and father of two. When the subject of family arose, Paul’s wonderfully expressive face lit up. As I shared stories and background info about my beautiful wife and daughter, Paul told me about his family. He was glowing when he discussed his son’s ambitions and daughters caring manner. He was quick to honor how hard his wife worked and when prompted for a picture of his kids, I had them in my hand before I could ask for the honor of seeing their faces.

Paul’s differentiator is not that he is the best driver I have met (which he is), the best tour guide I have ever met (which he is) or on of the most genuine person I have met (which he is). Paul’s differentiator is that he is proud. He is proud of his work. He is proud of his 16 year old son and his desire to root for Manchester United and pursue a law career. He is proud of his 13 year old daughter and her wild ambitions. He is proud of his wife, because…she is his life. When I asked Paul today, how do you manage to do such a great with your work and still provide and be there as a father, he smiled at me at put his hand on my shoulder. He then turned to me and said “I love people. I love the people that I drive, I love the people that meet, and of all, I love the people that are my family.”

I am 10,000 miles from home and now know that love…is love. I often find myself scrutinizing conversations or topics that just don’t matter. I waste time worrying about something menial, something that in the grand scheme of things means nothing. Paul works in an environment which he loves. He does not seem to consume himself with materialistic goals, or gossip or ANYTHING that falls outside of providing an amazing atmosphere and happy discussion, to talking about his wife, son and daughter. Paul gets it. He gets life.

When I go home I am going to kiss my wife and daughter, phone my family, and let them know that I love them. With all of the unnecessary stresses in life, I now have clarity. I now have focus. I have this because I got to fly with 14 of my friends to Kenya and on day one meet an amazing man offered me his hand and said “Hello sir, my name is Paul.”

Craig Bator
DWC Softchoice Cares Participant
Kenya, September 2013

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