January 12. Birthday.

It’s my birthday today. We get up at five am but of course Mr. Maasai Chief is not there. We ring him and he is still far away. We decide to go with another car and it seems we are going to have a friendly relation with the driver. But he has smelled money. He has betrayed us by promising to take us to the Maasai Mara, including a ride inside there (since that was why he had taken the 4wd). In the end it turned out that it was just the taxi to the entry of the Maasai Mara. The guy’s name is Edwin and I tell you, beware of him. Beware of all the guys in that area. They smell your money and they are relentless like the vultures in the park.

So we are left in the middle of nowhere. Suddenly there is a big jeep and I have to pay 100$ for the game drive. Since it is my birthday, I pay, but I decide that this is my last touristy thing in Kenya. I also pay the park entries for me and my friends. I reckon it must be so comfortable to have “no money”. I wanna try that some day. The big jeep takes us to see the big five and we have big fun. Yeah! Giraffe, Wildebeest, Ostrich, Vulture, and Hartebeest. Or…? Ah, yes, of course. We have seen Hippo, Rhino, Lion, Elephant, and Water Buffalo and plenty of them. It was very cool and generated awesome pictures for Charity Travel. See? You can combine the good with the cool.

We pass by a posh safari lounge and pay the park entrance. In the afternoon the driver shows us more but demands more money. I say no, and use the power I invent.
“This is kidnapping. If you don’t drop us at the Talek gate I will sue you for kidnapping. I know people. I know the MP of Kisumu west.”
The driver was shocked. Kenya adds a good whine and we go to the Talek gate. No more tourist milking for today. That idiot driver even lied to us about the price of diesel to make himself seem poor.

Anyway, we find a cheap place to stay and have a good night with friendly people. Tomorrow we will hitchhike and they will all help us and it won’t cost us a dime, I dream.

January 12. Birthday. was originally published on Meandering home

Published by

Kamiel Choi

Dutch philosopher and poet, sometimes sharing thoughts on the internet.

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