Something crystalic. If there is such a word. Something clear. But the destination? not so much. It’s Friday. Tomorrow being a Saturday is a Trek weekend, at least that is what we have tagged it. If it were to be a trending hashtag. Maybe soon, hopefully soon, for good reasons though.
Like I said, the destination is not clear. We have no activity for the weekend. We had planned to go shoot targets in Lang’ata then watch traditional dancers at Bomas. I love diverse cultures. That would have been a fun packed one. Right? I thought so.
First call, the Kenya Regiment and Rifle Club. A lady answered. Sweet voice. With an accent. I asked what it takes to use their facility. She replied with a question. Do you have a firearm? Oh Lord, How I wish. My enemies would become friends immediately.
Ok then, here are the charges. You will need Ksh.1000 ($10) for registration, another Ksh.1000 for firearm hire and…oh God. At this point I almost switched off. My target was to spend 1000 shillings in total. Including lunch. Hehe. Ohhh Sorry…let me finish…and Ksh.2500 for a few rounds of ammunition. My temper is high, I don’t think a few rounds would help me calm down.
Well, dreams shattered I guess. But we will be back, better planned and ready to shoot.Anyway, that is how we ended up changing our plans at the last minute.
Let’s think, not for a minute though, that’s for movies. Where can we visit for cheap but fun and slightly outside Nairobi. If you look at our places visited map you will notice we have covered a very small radius, so we are trying to expand on that. Again, hopefully soon.
Google is always my friend, especially in times like this. Try googling something like Best in Eldoret and tell me what you see. Well, it pops up the best in Eldoret. I did the same but for Nairobi, Kiambu, Machakos and Kajiado. I didn’t get much of what I wanted. All I got was hotels. I have a place to stay already, so I passed.
Kajiado popped something interesting. Something that you can only watch on YouTube if your search is inclined towards How It’s Made.
The Kitengela Hot Glass and Swaying Bridge. These are two different venues but same destinations. Can one say that? Well I just did. I made a few calls from the numbers that I got through my friend, Google.
Again, Someone answered. Entry fee is Ksh. 300 per person if the group is more than 4 persons. But it is free for a lesser group. Sounds weird right? Maybe I didn’t get that right. Make a call to confirm. But we are going anyway.
Like I said, two destinations, fences apart. So I had to inquire on the swaying bridge. I am a dare devil so this was of more interest than even the hot glass stuff. I love thrills. Cheap ones, if available.
The guy on the other side of the call gave me a number and I called. Someone answered, again, with an accent. I have one as well. So, I don’t mind. She gave me the office number, a wrong number but I came to learn it might not be her fault she is almost 80 years old. She is the owner of Nani’s Kitengela Glass and Cottages. She has 5 dogs, one almost bit me when I went to say hi. No Scar though.
I thought the driveway was artistic until I got into the parking lot. Sculpted heads, masoned animals, welded insects, then you have got the glass art. It’s everywhere. Some are obvious then you have the abstract that a view from only one angle calls for a prolonged discussion.
They have done well. They even have a gallery. Kenyan Made. Makes me proud. Don’t forget the pottery shop Kris. Please.
Kevin, one of the guides walks up to us to introduce us to the gallery. There are charges we have to incur. Ksh. 200 for the Tour and another Ksh. 200 for the Bridge. No Big deal, I haven’t crossed my 1000 shilling mark yet. What about lunch? Let’s enjoy the art for now. God will take care of us like He does with the birds. They have glass made bird feeders by the way. I’ll come back for one. I Promise.
On to the Bridge. Below is a ridge. We have to make it across. It is a swaying one, remember. Shaky knees. It’s a short one though, so perhaps if I run across I won’t have to feel it that much. Bad idea. It’s a swaying one, remember. Step by step, hand on the grip. Midway,I hear voices saying not to look down. So, I look to my side and there it is the beauty that says, God is real. A streamflow beneath, crowded by shrubs. It is beautiful. That’s the word.
I pause, take out my phone and take a few shots. Then I realize I am 50 meters above ground. So, if the phone falls then I will have to jump for it, the river is shallow, so again, bad idea. I walk past my fears to the other side. The team follows, it’s a mini hike to a vast open field. Nothing much to see, Oh wait, are those Gazelles or Antelopes. We debate for a while then realize none of us studied zoology.
We are back, what next. How about shooting a little episode of How It’s Made. The topic of discussion, Glass.
Anselm, just a fence apart, is a glass recycling/ manufacturing company. The compound is well kept. Trees decorated with hanging glass. I’ll share some photos on Instagram. The tables, you guessed it right. Glasses. A Maasai Moran directs where to park. The cabro parking lot is made of…you guessed that wrong…Not glass but recycled plastics. Their logo reads ‘everything unique, nothing wasted’.
We walk in and Lillian greets us, oh by the way the Moran is called Lesiyampe. I hope I got that right. It’s not just ladies ‘ names I remembered this time. She directs us to a furnace. About 8 men inside. With metal rods yielding glossy slimy stuff at the end of each. That is glass, molten glass. Like I said, How it’s Made.
She explains the details of each process and there is just one thing about adults and finding a way to twist regular stories to sound sexual. There were 7 of us, I hope you get the picture. We kept giggling and smiling as Lillian explained about the glass bottle making process. A few questions later, we are done. A quick tour through their glass shop and people are now hungry. I guess it’s just from staring at the bowls and plates at the shop. Something to bite, a few stories later and we decide we are going to have lunch in the famous Rongai Town.
A dozen of poor roads later, we are in traffic, a cop walks by and it hits me. I haven’t renewed my car insurance. Damn it. This is Kenya, nothing goes past a cop with just a warning, we are headed to the station. Few minutes later, we are out. Time for a meal, a drink and some English Football.