Sunday, October 17, 2010

Photo Spam: Nairobi, Kenya 2010

Just got back from a short trip to Nairobi, Kenya! Sadly it was a short trip for work, so I didn't have much time to really see (and photograph) what the city has to offer, but here's a small collection of shots.

First though, a few thoughts on Nairobi:

(1) The Weather. Before landing here I'd thought that the entire continent of Africa was "omg it's so hot I'll just sit in front of the aircon the whole day." But Nairobi is actually pretty cool. The few afternoon hours are similar to Kay-El/Singapore kind of weather, but other than that it's mid 20's during the day, and low 20's at night. Lovely weather to be in.

Big difference is the humidity though, or rather lack of it. The air here is very dry, and very dusty.

(2) The city. One Kenyan leader's quote was "Nairobi has become a city of 10 millionaires and 10 million beggars," and that's kind of true. While the city centre is modern, just a 5 minute drive out to the industrial area and Nairobi starts to look very poor indeed. Plus, it's a bit disconcerting to be at a traffic light sitting in a car and having 5-year old child beggars mob you asking for money.

(3) The people. Now I'm no expert in world cultures, but the Kenyan people (in Nairobi, at least), are among the friendliest and most helpful I've met. They're cheerful, jovial, and make you feel very 'at home.'

(4) The security. Security is high. Practially every hotel, office building, and many restaurants, clubs and other buildings have full time 24-hour security guards with car undercarriage mirrors and metal detectors. Does make walking around the city a tad bit less relaxing.

But OK, enough of my rambling - before you get bored and alt-tab, here are the photos as promised! We start off with the roadside vendors - these guys walk in the middle of the roads from car to car selling everything under the sun - including puppies, kittens, and baby rabbits:

Every Saturday there is a Maasai market in the city centre - where the indigenous people peddle their handiwares:

Panorama shot of Nairobi from the top of Kenyatta International Conference Centre. Click here for a larger size to really do justice to the shot.

Industrial area. No this isn't a jail, it's a wall to a factory compound.

Random roadside stall ... not sure what they sell :D

Nairobi street market!

Rows upon rows of handicraft at a gift shop.

And on to the food (what to do ... this is a food blog after all)! This was beef stew with rice. Sh200 (about rm8) - tasted quite 'Malaysian,' actually. Except for the vegetable that I'd never tasted before.

Meatball soup. Very 'herby.' Sh160

Tuna melt sandwich with fries. Nice, but a little different tasting cos of (probably) the same unknown vegetable.

Chicken Masala with Naan.

That ends this first post about Nairobi! I did manage to squeeze in a trip to Nairobi National Park for Safari - pictures to come in the next photo spam post!

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