Archive for July 2013

Kenyan Coffee

Tuesday, 16. July 2013

is well known around the world at least amongst coffee lovers. Not so much known – at least completely unknown to me – is the following way to drink coffee. It is a completely new element to be added to the range from filter coffee to espresso, from cappuccino to all the varieties of coffee (alcohol) mix. Wikipedia lists more than 100 coffee specialties, with Austria clearly leading the creativity ranking, followed by Italy, and all the other countries far behind. No Kenyan variant is documented there, and not even Ethiopia – the home of coffee – with its unique coffee ceremony is mentioned (so much on the Euro-centricity of Wikipedia).

This is what I want to share:

Take a cup of very hot traditionally brewed coffee (strong filter coffee is a substitute)
Add two slices of lime
and a spoon of of honey

Stir and enjoy

Nairobi Traffic

Monday, 15. July 2013

Colleagues warned me I should leave the office no later than 4 or well after 7. Since I didn’t have food other than breakfast and I didn’t want to starve I followed their advice. Although the taxis was already waiting and I lost no minute to get on the street, I could already sense what was going to happen rather sooner than later.

I did already experience bumper to bumper stop and go on the main roads on Saturday. Today I was bound to small streets outside the CBD. And while traffic lights didn’t matter too much in the CBD, there were no traffic lights at all (no police either) were we had to go back to the hotel.

No traffic signs either!
Used to South African customs I was expecting 4-way-stops.
Far wrong!
Yes, we were stopping, but it was a battle at each intersection. And I received the impression my driver was making the decision on the spot whether he was battling straight thru (or even worse turn right) or sneak out to the left.

Happy hat it wasn’t later so we made the way in a reasonable time. Because after my daily newspaper reading I am sure I wouldn’t have been brave enough for a boda boda – and a matatu might have been much cheeper but would not have allowed to gain any time advantage in a grid-lock situation.

Mingle with Locals

Sunday, 14. July 2013

Close to the hotel – visible from my room – there is a park, which seems to be the place to go on sunny weekends.  Children’s voices full of excitement, snippets of music reached my ear this afternoon and dragged me outside. IMG_0405-webIMG_0404-webCrossing the street I read at the entrance “Uhuru Park – Recreation Ground”.

The area did buz
Couples and families relaxing on the lawn,
kids chasing each other,
others having a ride on toy cars, pushed by young adults.
The latter obviously just one option to make money. The number of ice-cream men countless, at each corner at least 2 – 3 in addition to the stands selling water, soft-drinks and sweets. Some ticket seller for whatever lottery were clearly outnumbered by photographers with more or less professional digital cameras. Close by they kept their printers in cardboard boxes (open at one side) to protect them against the sun – photos (on high gloss photo paper) on demand. I wonder how they powered the printers. Another business: painting the children’s faces.

IMG_0403-webIMG_0402-webKids queued for different types of carrousels and whole families were patiently waiting for a pedal boat becoming available.

For a more exotic leisure activity take a camel ride fifty meters up and down the pavement, which was obviously more in demand than a ride on horseback. The horses and ponys next IMG_0417-webIMG_0407-webto the four camels spent a lazy afternoon.

The huge crowds were obviously a good opportunity for school classes and their teachers to raise funds for science text books.
I turned back to the hotel, passing the Murumbi African Heritage Collection.