A British reporter shares his experiences running with Kenyans.
Guardian correspondent Adharanand Finn has been traveling in Kenya reporting on what it’s like to run there. He recently filed a dispatch from Nyahururu, the highest town in Kenya. While he was there, he stayed at Thompson’s Falls Lodge, the town’s most exclusive hotel. Finn notes that the hotel “has seen better days.” While there, Finn went running with John Ndungu, a coach employed by the lodge to take Western tourists running.
“Ndungu is an interesting athlete,” writes Finn. “For years he worked as ‘house boy’ at the lodge. He squeezed his running in around 16-hour shifts, working seven days a week for just $60 a month.”
An Australian staying at the lodge discovered Ndungu’s talent and sponsored him through a charity program to race in Australia. Ndungu managed to place sixth at the Sydney Half Marathon. He collected $6000 in prize money and returned to Africa as the lodge’s official coach. “The dream, at least in part, had been realized,” writes Finn.
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