06.01.2011 - 23.01.2011
Tuesday, Jan. 25th:
I had a fantastic time being home for the holidays this year. Got to spend tons of time with family, especially Henry, and friends. But alas, after some long flights, I was back in Kenya and suffering from jet lag.
What's the best cure for sleep deprivation...motorcycling! It was my buddy Philip's bday, so a group decided to rent motorcycles (and their drivers) for an afternoon of exploring Kitengela. Kitengela is a "suburb" of Nairobi, where Lindsey once lived and still has many friends. Driving around was exciting because you never know what you'll find. The town borders the Nairobi National Park to the south, and the government has decided that this area doesn't need a fence. Meaning, lions sometimes get into the cattle and goat herds, leading to trouble!
Luckily, the most dangerous animals we spotted during our ride were donkeys and zebra. Yeah!
One of the highlights of being outside of Nairobi are the kids. They are fascinated by mzungus (white people) and can stare for hours!
Kitengela town, one of the many side streets. The area is known for its cement factory, only adding a little bit more dust to the air!
Brokering the deal. How many bikes, how many riders, how much.
Midway through the ride we stop for a break. One of Lindsey's friends is in the process of building some bandas (small homes) to use for tourists to come and see an authentic Maasai village. You can see one of our bikes through the window in the hut.
Lindsey taking a breather.
After Philip's bday, it was time to celebrate my own! We had the 4th annual fried chicken and bowling extravaganza. It was a great time filled with good friends, food and fun!
Then, this past weekend, I set out for Naivasha with two friends, Lindsey and Devon. We decided to camp (my first time using my new tent) and visit Hell's Gate, another Kenya national park. This one is unique, however, in that you can rock climb, hike and bike throughout the park. "Usually there are no predators," says my guide book. But, according to Jackson, our hired ranger, they've spotted hyena, wild dogs, and even a cheetah recently. But don't worry, no lions until August!
Lake Naivasha in the distance.
Entrance to the park. This is supposedly the inspiration behind Pride Rock in The Lion King.
Steep cliffs covered in vulture poop!
There weren't too many animals, but I can never resist another picture of giraffes and zebra!
The crew: Lindsey, myself and Devon
Went spalunking (cave exploring?), officially, for the first time!
The area is full of hot springs. Kenya has been using the springs for power sources. Smart thinking!
Getting ready for the hike! That's Fischer's Tower in the background!
Lindsey preparing to descend into the gorge.
There were tons of waterfalls throughout the hike!
Lindsey and me in the gorge!
Hot springs! You can boil eggs in some of the pools!
High walls all around
View from the top, we're almost done!
Anyways, the 2 hour hike was an adventure! The gorge is a combination of steep climbs, waterfalls, hot springs, and high cliffs. Our group gradually grew in size as some without a guide realized what a help Jackson was, especially when climbing down ravines! On our way back up, we walked through his village, blessed some of the kids, and headed back to the cars. Overall, a great day!
Come on Devon, time to change gears!
Acacia tree's buds.
Jackson and Lindsey trying to pinch the tower.
Hands up and breathe!