Kenya; Ever So Brief…

The bus ride up from Arusha in Tanzania to Nairobi was fairly uneventful. At the border crossing there was naturally a large carving (and general souvenir) market. There was a tall hardwood giraffe there similar to the one we’d seen in Thailand. This one was a little bit bigger, a nicer wood, but had huge, out of proportion ears. The price was also a little crazy at $1,500 versus about $125 for the Thailand one!

Kenya was pretty OK, especially considering the recent country-wide strife. The day before we arrived a massive strike was planned by the opposition. Many journalists insisted that this would quickly become a civil war because the corrupt president just wouldn’t give in. In the end, they came to an agreement just the day before the planned strikes and protests.

The country side was obviously similar to Tanzania, but with one HUGE difference. Fences… There were organized livestock fences almost everywhere along the highway and roads. In Tanzania (not to mention India, and all of SE Asia!) all domesticated animals were free range. The kids played with about a 12 year old girl in the main terminal for five hours. There were only a dozen seats in the main area, and they were all terribly uncomfortable. Off to Cairo we then went, for a morning of rest before touring the ancient Egyptian Civilizations remarkable sites.

Nairobi seemed like almost any regular Western city, except for the car names. It was sorta clean, had sidewalks etc, but many people still drove a bit like maniacs. The bus arrived just a little after lunch and the hotel it stopped at was just barely OK. Rooms were only $25/night, but they wanted a whole extra $25 for a 6:00 PM check-out the next day instead of the standard 60%. I figured I could do better and left the other three in a restaurant for a bite while I walked around. Up the street a block was another place that Lonely Planet suggested. It was a slightly nicer room, but a suite for four of us with breakfast was $114/night. After a few more I hit up a high class place thinking that they’d be empty and would have a smok’in price. Oooops! “Not a chance” that rooms would be discounted I was told in so many words. Can’t blame a guy for trying I thought. My last stop was the NAIROBI SAFARI CLUB which looked like a typical elegant Four Seasons kind of joint. They gave me a rate of 7000 shillings which I promptly transformed into only $100!!! These were normally $3565/night rooms that included breakfast and pool use. SCORE!

Late the next day we went to the airport to wait for our 4:00 AM flight, . It was OK except they wouldn’t let us check-in and get through security until 100 minutes before the flight.

Comments are closed.