Monday, 18 January 2010


We've been here three and a bit months now, but surprises are still coming fairly thick and fast. Here are a few that have struck me in the last few weeks...

(1) Sitting outside the furniture workshop waiting for the spare bed to be completely finished before Christmas a Maasai turned up outside - typical getup for your average Moran: a couple of nice red wrap arounds, bit of beaded jewlery here and there, thousand mile sandals (cut from an old car tyre, you can walk a 1000 miles in them before they give up...), large knife / spear. The usual sort of thing. But he started looking at the cabinets lined up outside, which I thought interesting to start with - not many Maasai huts have fancy cabinets inside in my experience. But then his mobile rang and he dug around in the robes, pulled it out and started chatting away - even the Maasai are connected these days! And I thought that was all for surprises there, when he turned around and I saw he had a motorcycle helmet on the other arm!!! I'd love to have seen him zipping through the bush, robes flying everywhere, helmet and spear at the ready...

(2) Getting a lift home the other day in a taxi (landrover once again at fundi). Normally this involves Afripop or some hiphop/rap blasting out on the radio, or at least the British football results being read out. This time he reached for the radio, twiddled around a bit until, bizzarely, he settled for a channel playing a Catholic Mass being read in Latin, with the occasional light chant. Certainly a more peaceful way of travelling, but somewhat surprising all the same!

(3) The sweet potatos bought by Mama the other day, when cut open revealed not a nice orangy inside, but white. Which rapidly oxidised to green. Appetising! (We're already used to all citrus-fruit being green, but this was new!)

(4) The kindness of relative strangers when it comes to helping someone in difficulty. (See last post!)

(5) Finding a (sadly deceased) gecko lurking under the eggs in the fridge door. How on earth did it get there?!

(6) That my little, little brother became a Daddy on Friday - surely not?!!


  1. We get both types of sweet potatoes in Australia, too. The other bit I've experienced is the dead gecko - but not in the fridge! That might well be the best place for them though (apart from all the salmonella) because the smell of rotting gecko somewhere in the room is one of my less-fond, but unfortunately fairly consistent, memories from Townsville.

  2. So what do you do with the white sweet potatoes? They weren't so good roasted as the moister orange ones. I figured a curry... (could also make use of the gecko that way I guess...)

  3. If you're going to curry the gecko I would recommend marinading it in gin for a couple of weeks. Then throw away the gecko and drink the gin

  4. Jane reckons they're good for roasting, maybe you just got a bad one. I'm not sure I can tell you... I know you usually get the choice in Aussie supermarkets...