Our team received strict warnings from our clients (local Kenyans) and our new expat friend about the danger of walking around at night. “Kenya in the day and Kenya at night are two different places,” our friend warned. “Follow the locals and do what they do – you will not see them out after 7:30pm. You’ll see them get in a taxi or on a motorbike to drive 30 feet and enter a new restaurant. They do not walk.”
Thanks to our new network, we were able to heed their warnings – the man in the unmarked vehicle was actually a taxi driver that came highly recommended by our expat friend. Most taxis in Nakuru are unmarked, so we were extremely grateful to have numbers for reputable drivers. The five of us crammed into the vehicle and safely navigated the dark streets of Nakuru.
The power of connection, as evidenced by our taxi experience, has had a huge impact on our experiences in Kenya so far. At home in the US, we have connections in the form of ubiquitous internet access and cultural orientation, and these connections grant us a powerful capacity to be independent. In Kenya, we’ve found we’re quite dependent on our client for almost everything – finding reputable taxi drivers, making trips to town and work, buying our first groceries, managing our home, regaining electricity, securing internet access, and accessing emergency water reserves.
David, Alex, and Angela working by back-up light during a power-outage in Nakuru, Kenya
This weekend, our team, accompanied by an employee from LGHL, Kevin, ventured out to Naivasha, Kenya, for a camping excursion. We were able to secure cabins atop a beautiful hill in Naivasha thanks to our connections in Nakuru. We were also given suggestions for things to do, including a trip to the breathtaking Hell’s Gate National Park, and hippo safari (see below). When we got to the park, Kevin negotiated an unforgettable tour of the Gorge in Hell’s Gate for 1/3 of the originally quoted price! Our excursion would not have been the same without the companionship and advice from our newfound connections.
Rula, Kevin, Alex, Angela, and Ryan enjoying a Hippo Safari!
As we become more aware of the delicate web of relationships that allows us to function productively in Kenya, it will be our challenge as consultants to harness its potential for actionable recommendations to our business partner, LGHL. So far, we’re enjoying the journey!
A hippo makes an appearance and Dave captures a great shot!