A fter having lunch — as part of the safari package in Kenya — we took a walk from our campsite to a village nearby inhabited by people of the Maasai society, about whom you can learn more here. We were guided by a Maasai man who told us some very interesting tidbits of information along the way.
Do you want protection against mosquitoes? Rub the leaves of what he called the ashee — I am uncertain of the spelling — bush all over your skin. I did. It has a nice mild smell to it.
I am not sure if this was the reason; but I never received a single bite from a mosquito during the entire time I was in Kenya. I guess I purchased that expensive anti-Malaria medication and yellow fever vaccination for nothing. I know, I know: better to be safe than sorry, which is why I did it — but I digress.
If you have a — er — call out in nature and need toilet paper, the leaves from this Morning Glory shrub should certainly suffice in a pinch.
No, I did not test that claim myself. Rather, I accepted the word of the Maasai guide as gospel. The leaves did feel soft and smooth to the touch, though.
He also talked about this variety of the Acacia tree.
As we dodged numerous piles of cow and other types of manure while being bombarded by swarms of flies, we were brought to the edge of the village, where we were greeted by a welcome dance by some of the male Maasai people.
I was again reminded of when I was in Côte d’Ivoire years ago, where the indigenous people similarly welcomed us to their villages with festive dances — and in at least one of those villages, we were told that we were the first Americans ever to visit; but I digress.
We then were led into the Maasai village itself — but details of that will be for the next article pertaining to the Maasai people…