What a day.
Day 15 marked the day we went to Nairobi National Park, and my god was it worth the USD$42 entrance fee and five am wake-up time. I read once that Kenya is one of the only cities in the world whereby you can drive 30 minutes outside and be in the wildlife, and today definitely lived up to those expectations. As we drove around in a safari type vehicle, we spotted Zebras, buffalos, antelopes, deer, hippos, rhinos, giraffes and of course male and female lions, the highlight of the day. It was amazing to see them all in their natural habitat, and there was one image that’ll stick in my mind forever… it was that of three hungry female lions looking around for food about 70 meters from our van with the city skyline in the distance glistening in the sun. It was awesome. We were there from 6 am until around 11:30, and the whole time I was standing up eager to see more animals in their natural habitat. One giraffe we came across was on the road and he would not budge, which meant we had to wait for him to meander back into the wildlife while chewing on his leaves, which was so funny. Interestingly, half of the van fell asleep, so it was really just Nicole and I watching all the animals for the most part, but that kind of worked out for us because it meant we had free range of the bus to get the best camera angles.
After the mini-safari, we all traipsed off to Mama Oliech, a famous Kenyan restaurant we had attended on the second day of arriving. This time, however, we were not with our Kenyan drivers so they gave us a separate, more expensive, menu and refused to let us see anything else and then charged us KES800 (~USD$8) for our meals, instead of the 600 that was written on the menu. A random staff member also started taking photos of us on his phone, so Paul decided to go and confront the manager who then came and “sincerely apologized” and gave us a discount and his phone number.
Moving on from there we went to Yaya market where I bought groceries and an iced coffee and then hung out with Kait browsing the shops until we got tired and headed home. Once home, we made ourselves a drink, had a square or three of chocolate and spoke about our goals in life, career choices, and next adventures. I am glad I’m rooming with her, out of everyone here I think she is the most similar to me, and we have gotten super comfortable super quickly.
After a relaxing afternoon, we head down by the pool covered in mosquito repellant and had a BBQ. Midway through, VJ announced that he had bought us all ‘chapati’ bracelets, which was really cute. Chapati is a local staple that everyone loves, and it’s been kind of a running joke that everything we do involves chapati to the point that we say it instead of ‘cheese’ in group photos.
Now, I’m finishing off the night with a group viewing of Lion King, and then heading to bed so I’m ready for teaching tomorrow.