Old Mar 28th, 2006, 08:06 AM
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Well, it appears I mis-stated as I never did do any billable work – only housework. Then when I returned to my office ostensibly to work for pay, the siren call of the computer and Foders lured me to procrastinate. So where were we…..

SINYA WILDLIFE CONVERSANCY CONTINUED- DH DANCES MAASAI. As our camp was located on Maasai land, we had a local Maasai warrior, Lucas, riding with us for 3 days. Lucas told us about his culture and took us to visit a Maasai home, which resembles an igloo made of cattle dung, mud and ashes, for those of you who haven’t been to TZ yet or watched discovery channel. The inside is very dark with a fire in the middle; yet even with the heat, it was not oppressively hot inside. Very few personal belongings – a couple of mugs and plates. As they live with no electricity and no running water; we’d observe them gathering water from muddy puddles and waterholes. Apparently, their digestive systems have evolved and adapted to survive without pristine water. Their wealth and status is displayed by the number of cattle owned, and from our observations, women are valued one step below cattle in the pecking order. The more cattle a man has, the more wives he can acquire. According to Lucas, a male Maasai visitor is permitted to sleep with another man’s wife if he’s not home. The visitor just has to leave his spear outside the door to indicate he’s there – kinda like hanging a tie on the doorknob in a frat house. We never did figure out exactly what men do as it appears the women perform all the work, including construction of the homes. As most of you know, their ritual for a young person to pass from childhood to adulthood is a little more rigorous than having a confirmation or bar mitzvah. UNanaesthetized male and female circumcision; plus it’s unacceptable to display any evidence of pain or you’ll shame your family! Barbaric to our western sensibilities, but when the topic was discussed over dinner, the two guides present sided with the Maasai right to choose to continue their own traditions – although, I don’t believe these young women have much choice.

As part of our crash course in maasai culture DH was induced into taking part in a traditional male dance. We were taken to an overlook for a view of sunet when suddenly about a dozen giggling massai “warriors” ambushed us and two other couples. They dressed the men in red blankets and pulled them into a dance circle. The sight of DH garbed in his red plaid blanket, waving his spear while he danced the sunset dance and then the rain dance was worth every penny spent of the trip.

Our last night at Sinya it drizzled, a harbinger of nights to come! Rain for the first time in months - coincidence? I like to think DH’s dancing skills had something to do with it. Our last morning at Sinya Abraham permitted us to sleep in til the sun was up. Life was good! We awoke to hot coffee served by a Maasai and a view of sunrise over Kilimanjaro from the bed. Life was great!

Again, to be continued after I return a couple of business calls.

Chiquita is offline  
Old Mar 28th, 2006, 08:38 AM
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I read that the Maasai habit of sleeping with other women is causing problems because many have left the tribal areas, gone to the cities, become infected with AIDS/HIV and then come back and spread the virus through this custom.
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Old Mar 28th, 2006, 09:22 AM
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It will be easier to read your entire report if you keep it in a single thread. You can keep adding installments to it.
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Old Mar 28th, 2006, 10:05 AM
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I suggest you start a new post titled something like: Safari Report [and list countries you visited) and combine your two posts into one and then just add to it.

Great report. Please continue
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Old Mar 28th, 2006, 11:00 AM
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I've completed part I and am now enjoying part II. I do think, for future reference and research, it would be easier to link them together. However, I imagine LyndaS will do so on the E. Africa Trip Report Index. Right, Lynda??

By the way, I was so stunned at the inside of a Maasai hut I could think of nothing to say. No questions to ask, nothing. Just sat there like a fool. While I had seen huts on tv specials and the like, I just wasn't prepared for the real deal.
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Old Mar 28th, 2006, 12:39 PM
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I'm sure LyndaS will link all 3 threads in the East Africa Index, but just in case someone comes across this in the future not through the index, here are the other parts -

Part I;tid=34778745

Part III;tid=34778922
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Old Mar 30th, 2006, 06:57 PM
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Leely - you bet I will! I just finished dlo's report (wow, that one took quite a while for me to even write the short ;-)) review!), Sherry's report is up next, BostonGal's, Rocco's and then I should be on to Chiquita's! I have my work cut out for me, don't I?
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Old Mar 30th, 2006, 07:34 PM
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chiquita - great trip reports. I doubt I'll have the pleasure of seeing my husband doing a masaai rain dance, but I guarantee it would be worth every cent spent on the trip to see it! And the pictures would be great - even better than those "naked baby on bear rug" that you hold over your kids' heads!
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