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    • Day 12–13

      Who are the Masai?

      November 17, 2023 in Tanzania ⋅ ☁️ 30 °C

      My plan is to follow the shortcut road from Kisaki to the west through southern Mikumi National Park. But I have to ask around if it is usable after all the rains. For that I drive to the Matambwe gate of Nyerere Park where I find ranger John who serves me coffee and tells me "No, your planned route has not been used for several years." A safari car driver comes over and adds "Even in dry season it is not doable because a river bridge is missing. Only the railway bridge is left." John also calls his local Masai friend Saitoti who tells me the same. Damn.

      Saitoti wants to meet with me. "When you head back to Kisaki, I'll be waiting for you at the third railway crossing." he says on the phone. Half an hour later I cross the tracks a third time and ... behind a curve Saitoti jumps into my car. "Let's grab some lunch in Kisaki!" and off we go. Saitoti turns out to be a really nice guy and I learn a lot about the surroundings. He worked as tour guide in different national parks for 10 years until Corona cut down everything. This is when he returned here, back home. I ask him about his tribe and its distinction from the Masai tribes I met in northern Tanzania. "How great that you ask! I just finished writing a book about Masai and am publishing it through a Chinese publisher. (The European are too expensive.) Read it and all your questions will be answered 😁!" Later, he gifts me his very first personal book copy.

      I end the day at Masai-owned Lemara Eco Camp where I listen to bush babies, hyenas and the night train.
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