Thursday, 8 June 2006

I'm back for a flying visit....08 June 2006 13:22:02

Hi there,

well what a few days I have had a Navasha Lake and Hells Gate...... Megan, Marc (a friend of Megans) and I shot off for a few days away, actually it was supposed to be on Tuesday back Wednesday night...... we just got back (Thursday). The trip there was horrible, the bus was packed, as usual it wont leave unless all seats are full. I had an elderly gentleman beside me who talked for Kenya, he was a retired teacher now lecturing at the university two days a week. He wanted to know my views on Families, children, wedlock, polygamy, same sex marriage, same sex marriage and the couple having children....etc etc. It was quite interesting and his views were still very stickly governed by his religion, although polygamy is allowed out here!! I said in the Uk who would want more than one wife, apparently they all live together in a community here, and the first wife is the one the others have to look to as the one in charge. He wanted my mobile number as he said he wants to phone me so that before I return to England he wants me to attend a meeting of the Church elders and talk to them......... such the wrong person for that job. None the less he wouldn't take no for an answer, just waiting for the call!!!

The Fisherman's Campsite was fab, got up early and have fabulous sunrise photos, yes I said sunRISE!! Got up at 5am hoping to see hippos but they didn't arrive instead the most spectacular sunrise. We had hoped to stay in dorms at the site but they apparently had only recently sold off that bit of land so we ended up camping, three in a tent, snug!!

Went to Hellsgate yesterday. hired bikes for the long trek, um... bad idea. The roads were about a foot deep in lose dust in places and we had to walk a lot of the way. Unfortunately, this devil on wheels also took a flying fall when I was cycling and the bike got wedged in a rivet of dust. Megan and Marc had cycled some great distance ahead and I was left alone, I flew head long off the bike, landing on my chin and chest, I lay with a mouth of dust unable to breath for a while. When I got up I was black, my face, my whole front was covered in black dust. My chain had come off the bike in the fall and I ended up walking for about 10 mins until I caught up with the others who by this time had decided something was not right. My yelling 'Man down' hadn't worked. The chain back on the bike, my mouth washed out with water, a nice graze on my chin with embedded black dust and dust burns on my knees, to top this I had a lovely dust impression on the front of my tee shirt of my breasts where they landed in the must sell that design when I get home, I will call it the 'splat'!

We arrived at the Guide centre and had our packed lunch, dust an additional freebie! We took a guide and were walked down into a gorge it was fab but very hard going especially with heavy rucksac, bad knees and bruised bones...... It was so hot, we walked and leaped like gazelle across the gorge bottom, at points we were straddled from one rock face to the other with water below, spider walking so ensure we didn't get wet. We were shown hot springs that burnt our fingers. The next bit was hard we then had to climb to the top of the gorge to see the spectacular views, it nearly killed me, the guide felt sorry for me and offered to take my back pack but I said it was OK, wasn't going to let a bit of weight get the better of me. Wow what a lovely view. Walked back to the rangers station to the amusement of the rangers, they thought my T shirt looked lovely!! ummmmm. Got a lift back to the road as my bike had kinked the back wheel in the fall also and was so hard to ride, besides which it was such a long way back, I really couldn't face another 'angel in the dirt'!! Some German tourists gave us a lift, thank goodness. The bike man wasn't happy that we had left our bikes with the rangers although they said it was fine and happened all the time, he said they would play on the bikes and wreck them. Oops, no way I was going back for it!

Had dinner at the lodge steak medallions in a cream and mushroom sauce, nice, saw lots of monkeys, zebras, but sadly no hippos.... The ride back today was hellish.... the last two mornings I have had terrible nausea, bit like the morning sickness again, couldn't sit with the others while they had their breakfast so popped the amazing airport pills, they helped but took a while to take effect. The bus ride back, yes I said bus, we thought we had paid for a Matatu until we were ushered onto an old bus, we were packed like sardines, the ride was less than pleasant as they squeezed three of us on to a seat that should only have had the capacity for two, nice. It took over two hours of total bone rattling pain, just outside Nakuru the bus knocked someone off their bike, the bus eventually pulled over, we sat for about 3/4 hour, deciding to join everyone else and get off the bus as it looked as though it could have been a long wait. We walked into Nakuru, much to the amusement of the locals, I am wearing what was left of my clothes, from two days ago, needless to say my ensemble was not in a fit state to wear again from yesterday, I did was my trousers but they didn't dry in time, so I have on a strappy top, covered with a sleeveless shirt,and a Kanga ( like a sarong) that Megan bought yesterday, we are filthy and weighed down with our packed to the top rucksacs, {{ THANKS LES IT IS REALLY HANDY, ALTHOUGH A BIT BIG, I SEEM TO BE ABLE TO FILL IT WHERE EVER I GO, IT IS GETTING WELL USED}}

I didn't mention that as we thought we were sleeping in dorms we had taken out sleeping bag liners but nothing else, we hired a tent, mattress and blanket (thin as I was later to find out!) The first night, i put on all my clothes, it was freezing, I couldn't sleep at all, I kept trying to roll up in a ball on my side to keep warm, but my hips were so numb on the thin mattress and cold ground that it ended up painful, I eventually ended up putting the pillow bit of the sleeping bag liner over my head so that my breath would warm me up. I got no sleep and eventually got up at 6 and watched the end of a nice sun rise, I saw a neighbour had built a fire and sat with him, having a nice cup of tea, he is from California, (a nice man) the next evening he appeared with very very thick blankets for Megan and I, I nearly cried, I had a fabulous nights sleep last night, warm as toast....... I joined him again for a cup of tea this morning and then we left.

Megan and I decided that as we were in town we would do our emails, so smelling, dusty, sweaty and looking as though I have had a couple of rounds with Mike Tyson, we are here. I have to go back unpack and pack again, Debbie and a couple of other volunteers have booked us on a Masai trip this weekend, we leave tomorrow. Busy week only got to the project on Monday, but it appears they are pleased for us to take time off and see their lovely country, says it helps us tell stories and relate better to the projects.

I will be away for the weekend and come back on Monday evening ready for the boys fresh and early on Tuesday, I have missed them, how crazy is that....... especially Mwangi, he is a tiny character who is bonding well with me even though he is shy.

Ok must go as just saw the price of this session, thanks for the emails.

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