Visit at a Manyatta of the Masai tribe
In the morning we had to do some shopping first. We found an ATM, and one of the bottle stores where we could buy wine and whisky. Wine is rather expensive in Kenya, about 7 US$ per liter boxed wine. Then we were shopping in a supermarket. Alexandra had forgotten something, so she went back to the supermarket and almost lost her way.
After a while waiting she found us luckily. We headed on to Masai Mara, but did not take the main route, but a shortcut via the Mau mountains to Narok. The map showed it were tar to Narok, so a comfortable one hour’s drive. But soon the tarmac was finished and a terrible gravel started. We were driving through the mountains, steep ascents with really bad red soil ground. Then it even started to rain, so we were already considering to stop somewhere to stay overnight. So it took us hours to get on, only in the late afternoon we arrived in Narok, bought some meat, which we could not get in Narok, refueled and drove a few kilometers further to a small village, where we found a lodge (Osim Country Lodge) which allowed camping as well.
Originally we had planned to arrive that day in Masai Mara, because Robert and Maria had waited there for us, but we have known that it takes 4,5 hours to Aruba West Lodge, which we would not have made that day. The place was situated directly at the river, the room was basic but ok, and we were sitting together in the evening and chatting a long time.
In the morning my sister had breakfast at the river, for her first time real African breakfast, which she did not like, especially the chapati, which was to Tara’s advantage. We left rather early, because the road was supposed to be rough. We were wondering that the tar, which was potholed over and over three years ago, was repaired and allowed good speeds. But then came gravel, which was awful three years ago, but surprise they had graded it, so you could drive rather fast. Only a few kilometers before Sekanani Gate, it was not maintained, which slowed us down a bit. We had to turn off there, we had known the way from the last visit, but the tracks had changed so we got lost a little bit. And the rain had washed away some parts of the track. Then we arrived at the spot where you had to cross a river and I was surprised again, that the water was rather high compared to three years ago. So I was unsure where the best track was to cross the river. Luckily on the other side of the river there were some Masai guys, who directed me for the best way to cross the river, which worked out well. Due to the improved roads it took us only 2,5 hours instead of 5, so we arrived at Aruba Mara already at around noon. The owner Gerdi, a German, was very happy to see us again and Maria and Robert were glad that we did not drive the day before because there were heavy thunderstorms and all was flooded. So we had been lucky. We spent the afternoon with chatting and organizing my sisters trip into Masai Mara National Park. Robert and Maria joined her, they rented a car with driver.
Around noon we walked through the bush to a Masai village. It was a strange feeling for my sister to walk through a landscape that has lions, elephants, cheetahs and other dangerous animals. When we arrived at the village, the guys started to dance and showed how to make fire. Also the girls danced and we could have a look into a traditional Masai house, called Manyatta. Then we had to visit the curio market, a kind of self made stuff market, where they spent a lot of time, while Robert and I were waiting and observed the people. Robert took photos of the Masai girls, one of them was really shy, so Robert stopped, not to insult her. Then we walked back along the Talek River and finally arrived at the camp. Late night chatting and drinking.
Compare to three years ago