Whilst most of the Global Immersion people have been away strolling up and down Kilimanjaro… the rest of us (Audrey, Eliza, Natasha, Nicole,  and I), had an opportunity to stay overnight with a Maasai Family at their Boma.. We were joined by another couple of Brisbanites (Michael and Jasmine).

The Maasai group we stayed with –  the family of Form 6 St Jude’s student, “BaBa”, consists of a chief, his 8 (now 7) wives, 57 children and 30+ grandchildren.  Their Boma is one of the largest in the area (well into the countryside about 2hrs out of Arusha), consisting of a dozen or so huts (manyattas). Although this group has had a few visits from Wageyni, we were the first group who had actually stayed overnight.

We arrived late afternoon – to be greeted by the entire family, with beaming smiles and warm welcomes..and set about pitching tents within  their Boma (this was a great source of curiosity and amusement).  The girls took on this role with great enthusiasm and I knew better than to interfere….  So with just a little guidance (whilst I took photos of Sunset around the Boma) the tents were up.

We passed out balloons (to the great delight of the kids), and it was quickly dark.  They have no power or running water in the Boma (water is collected regularly by donkey from a community water supply some distance away).  and pretty much settle down for dinner (which is cooked and served within each mothers hut), and bed.

We had brought along own own cook – Ayuboo, from St Judes… who cooked and served our dinner at an alfresco table setup for us by the chief.

The area has been drought stricke3n fro some time, and has only recently had some rain an started to green up, but most of the other Bomas have lost many cattle to the drought. We saw many carcases left to rot on the drive in.  BaBas family had managed to move all their cattle away to greener pastures just in time though… so we were fortunate  not to have to share the Boma with a large herd of cattle as well..

Despite all the animal noises (barking/howling/fighting dogs, braying donkeys, and premature rooster crows) most of us slept surprisingly well overnight… and woke up early to be greeted by a sunrise over the savannah.

As a part of the visit, we bought the family  2 goats (which we named Nancy and Fernando – a.k.a “lunch”) – picking them up from the local village and loading them into the bus.  This morning the men got to watch Fernando being slaughtered (which was a surprisingly calm process), butchered and cooked.

Th girls were treated to a Maasai “beading” session by the mothers and daughters and were made and presented with some great necklaces.

We had to head off back to Arusha just before lunch, so weren’t able to participate in their lunch – but were given a leg to “snack’ on during the drive back… As Eliza said… “It tastes just like a goat smells”.

We all had an amazing experience  and am very thankful of this opportunity of cultural sharing between us Mazungus and the Maasai.