Day 1: First Impressions (Nairobi to Karen)

Africa arrival!I’ve been in three different continents in the last there days, and I’m disoriented enough without trying to wrap my head around that! I honestly can’t be entirely sure about anything at this point, because my brain still thinks it’s somehow both dinner time and time to wake up. Nairobi, where we’re about to land, is, I think, 10 hours ahead of Vancouver, which is the biggest time zone change I’ve ever had. Honestly, I’m surprised we’re even doing this well, since I think my dad’s gotten slight jet lag from daylight savings before. I’m really not sure what I expected to see in Nairobi. When we first left the airport we really could have been just about anywhere tropical from Hawaii to Mexico at a first glance, except naturally that everyone was African. The buildings around here range from mansion to what would be assumed to be an abandoned building in Vancouver, except I’m guessing here: it’s not. It wasn’t really a shock for us, but if you expected the entire continent of Africa to be slums, deserts, and black people then I guess you would have been in for a surprise. We got a ride from Nairobi to Karen, a suburb where we’d be staying the night and here was where, for me, the differences began. It was strange, from my North American eyes, to see business men in suits trudging down the muddy road towards the city. Beautiful homes appeared here and there along the road mixed in with projects and things that were about half done. OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA “Everything’s always under construction.” Our driver told us. At this my dad laughed and said, “Just like home.” We finally arrived at the Karen Blixen Hotel, which is apparently the place the girl from “Out of Africa” actually lived or something, In fact, maybe this whole town’s named after her, I’m not sure. Maybe I should have watched the movie before we came to do a bit of research on Kenya. Even watching The Lion King might help out a bit, with all its Swahili words. (Oh well, Hakuna Matata!) Our rooms look like something out of a medieval castle with stone walls and hanging candles, they even have actual keys to lock everything from the front door to the bathroom! OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA

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The rest of today was just for us to rest up before heading off into the Maasai Mara tomorrow, and I’m very glad to have a chance to try and catch my breath a bit. (Emphasis on TRY) OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA

So, until then I guess, because I need to take a nap!

Hannah

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