Sunday, October 16, 2016

Celebrating with Family in Kenya

I am jumping back into time when I spend Easter with an amazing family in Kenya. I went with my coworker Judy and her family to her rural home for Easter celebrations. When we pulled in, our group was welcomed by signing and dancing. We exchanged hugs and handshakes with all the family members and were escorted into the home dancing, signing and clapping.


We had arrived a bit late so lunch was already ready and waiting for us. We sat down in the small living room and were given an enormously large plate of food. The plate had brown ugali, sakuma wiki, cabbage, beef, fried potatoes, rice, beans and stewed chicken. I struggled to eat the large portion of food. When the meal was over we headed to a small make-shift tent.


The next two hours consisted of sermons from many of the party attendants. We sang and clapped between sermons. After two hours it was time to give gifts. One by one each person, group or family offered something to the host family. We clapped and sang as lassos and blankets were put around the necks of the elders. We sat Judy's parents in front of a small table and began setting gifts of milk, sugar, flour and cooking utensils in front of them.

When the singing was over we said bye to party attendants who were leaving that evening. I explored the estate with some of the kids in the neighborhood. I had a photoshoot with Judy's father and their cow. I took many pictures with the family.


Soon it was dinner time. I was still stuffed from lunch but I forced myself to eat the rice, potatoes and beans. As the sun set the family illuminated a small solar powered light. Other than that light there was no other power in the house.


As guests we were ushered to another small home still under-construction to sleep. We lit the small oil lamps and prepared for bed. The next morning we boiled water over the open fire and took showers behind curtains in an opening field.

Once clean and fed, the family loaded into Judy's brothers car and headed to Lake Bogoria. Lake Bogoria is an hour drive from Judy's rural home. Its located at the bottom of the rift valley surrounded by dry dessert-like scenery. The park entrance is 500 ($5) for resident students and 300 ($3) for citizens.


Before driving into the park we loaded up with snacks, raw eggs, cookies and soda. We headed off through the dirt roads, keeping our eyes out for wild animals in the shrubbery surrounding the lake. We headed straight to the thermals, located 45 minutes from the southern entrance of the park.

When we arrived at the thermals we were starving. With the the help of a guy near the thermals we were shown how to cook our raw eggs in the hot water. We watched them boil in the bubbling water. The water was so hot that it felt like a sauna around the thermals.


We then headed back down the dirt road and stopped to enjoy the group of flamingo's that bathed in the lake. On the way back home we stopped in a small town for lunch. It was a small hole in the wall restaurant with only one dish. They called it the "special." It was a mixture of potatoes, rice, noodles, beans and broth. After filling up we headed back to Eldoret.



4 comments:

  1. What a beautiful story and wonderful scenery, awersome.....

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  2. Easter to be remembered, Jepchumba.............

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  4. Sometime going somewhere else specially some new city or place in a car get so much boring. But it seems like you had a great time in your car with non crowded lonely road.

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