Ngong Hills

Last week, on a rare day off, we hired our trusty taxi driver, Wyckliff (yes, he spells his name that way), to drive us to Ngong Hills Forest Reserve for a little fresh air. There are four or five hills that you can hike up, each with progressively better views. To the east, you can see Nairobi and other small towns, while the Great Rift Valley expands to the west. On the way up the first hill, there are a few windmills that generate electricity.

We mistakenly stopped at the forest reserve office prior to hiking. This proved to be a mistake, as the rangers proceeded to try to get us to hire two armed rangers for the walk. These rangers come at a price of 1,500 KES each, or just under $20. We found this to be rather unreasonable, especially since the guy at the forest reserve did not seem to have any good reason for having two people come with us. “Anytime you have someone with a gun, you need two people. All around the world this is the standard.” Noting our skepticism at his logic, he quickly added, “There are buffalo. And a lion.”

ha. There were definitely no lions in the hills. And eventually we just left the office and did the walk without the armed rangers. Instead of lions and buffalo, which would have been quite exciting, we ran into a group of school children who were there on a field trip. Very dangerous, indeed.

After the walk, we stopped by Brew Bistro for some well-deserved beers. Happy hour runs from 5-7pm, during which time you get two-for-one brews. You don’t even need to ask… they automatically bring you two beers of whatever you order. Not a bad end to the day.

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[photo by Jack]

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Kibera Photo Walk

Last week, a fellow intern and I, along with two KDI staff members – Amos and Abdallah – spent an afternoon walking around Kibera, cameras in tow. The point was to capture water quality at different points along the river, but it was also a great excuse to capture some of the things we experience daily in Kibera. Amos and Abdallah are both awesome photographers, so I have included several of their photos below (as noted). It was a fun day.

photo by Abdallah: construction workers taking a break

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children playing in their parents’ vegetable stand

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colorful fences

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photo by Abdallah: the makings of a flavorful stock

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photo by Abdallah: fish for sale

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Amos taking pictures

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Wilson is always hard at work in the KDI office

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cute kids everywhere

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the railroad tracks in Kibera

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photo by Abdallah: charcoal for sale

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“take a picture of me being free” – man smoking a joint

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photo by Amos: children chanting – probably something between “take my picture” or “give me sweets”

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puppy in a trash pile

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Jack, fellow intern

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