I’m typing the blog tonight from the relative comfort of a cottage at a safari lodge just outside Nakuru – six hours drive from our place and three hours drive from
. I’m travelling with the Cisco team who have been with us all week to meet up with three of their colleagues who will be staying with us from tomorrow. Nairobi
The drive from Kosele to the safari lodge would have been amazing fun in a rally car but was a bit less enjoyable in a 9 seater mini bus. We have travelled quite a distance on bad roads today; largely due to repairs on the main road we should have taken giving rise to diversions across country. As it has been dry the extra traffic on the dirt roads we used stirred up the most choking sand storms and reduced visibility to zero at times. The secret of successfully negotiating dirt roads is to scan the road ahead for potholes. In these conditions it’s very difficult to do this so it was a more than usually bumpy ride. The dirt roads are unforgiving on vehicles. We saw large articulated lorries pulled over to repair punctures and about half way through the longest rough road section fell victim to the same problem ourselves – a puncture in the front driver’s side tyre. It’s slightly disconcerting changing a tyre as buses and lorries hurtle past you, and it was very strange, at different points along the road, experiencing grid lock. Lorries, minibuses and cars vied with each other for passing spaces like competitors from the cartoon series The Wacky Races.
We travelled across an interesting cross section of Kenyan landscape today, from the dry dusty hills around Kosele, through the ‘tea zone’ and in and around the hills of the Mau forest before finishing our journey just outside Nakuru. I always enjoy travelling around
, (on the rare occasions that I get a chance to), and it was interesting seeing how each community makes best use of the resources that are locally available. Driving on the dirt road through the Mau forest I was surprised to see homes that looked like alpine huts, made of wood and, in one or two cases, painted in bright colours. I was amazed that farmers in this area were able to grow any crops at all on the steep slopes of the hills. When it rains I could imagine both crops and houses just sliding down the hill. Kenya
It should be an interesting day tomorrow. We will be setting off very early to travel to
to fly off in different directions. Three of the team I am travelling will be off to Heathrow and two will be flying to Nairobi Mombasa for a few days before returning to . I shall be flying back in a small plane with a fresh team of volunteers to the landing strip near our place. As I’ve never flown in a small plane before I have mixed feelings about the flight but am, on the whole, looking forward to it. I’m definitely looking forward to meeting our new friends, who have not been to Kosele before. London