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    White man can jump, with flare

    January 19th, 2007 by steve

    One of the touristy side trips to do when going through the game parks is to visit a traditional Maasai village, called a boma. These are villages made of sticks, mud, dung, and hides with all the huts facing inward forming a protective circle. The Maasai take turns living there for 2yrs at a time to show tourists their culture while lighten their wallets. Our steadfast inclination was to avoid these genuine fake abodes, but in a moment of weakness mixed with mild curiosity and fear of missing out we held back our cynicism and found ourselves standing outside their thorny acacia lined fortification. A group of women and men came out to greet us chanting and parading as if we were coming back from a successful lion hunt we were told. Right, we just came from their hole of an outhouse. I suppose that’s adventure in itself. We follow them inside where the women are standing in an open area to the left and the men just opposite. Both groups take turns ceremoniously singing and jumping. Then the mzungus were invited to join in the exercise. Steve hops in and starts bouncing like a bean in a hot skillet, flashing a boyish grin on his face. I get my turn over as soon as possible. Then we are led into one of their chest height homes where our guide, the chief’s son, chats with us about their way of life, how to hunt a lion, and the many ways we could give him money. Yes, it was hokey but we were glad we did it because we learned interesting things about the Maasai that we wouldn’t otherwise have. For example Maasai warriors still hunt lions, their food staples are blood, milk, meat, and fat, and the women rebuild the homes every eight years.

    – Mary

    And now the picture Mary didn’t want you to see

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