How did the contest begin? We walked through the Maasai Steppe with our guides in the late afternoon. Chagamba walked in front with a rifle and our Maasai guides walked in the rear with their spears. Did someone ask just how effective were those spears? The next thing we knew a competition started between two Maasai elders. They aimed for a tree.
Then Chagamba, our guide who is from the Ikoma tribe, borrowed a spear. His throw rivaled the Maasai’s. Next up was Mika, our guide who lives in Tanzania. (We thought he could improve with a little practice.) Last to compete was our group member, Jack. After a brief tutorial he took aim.
Each throw brought laughs, groans, and cheers.
That night at the campfire, we talked to the Maasai (with Chagamba and Mika interpreting). They were surprised we were such an old group and shook their heads slightly in shock that we lived in urban locations. As for us, we were surprised to learn that they have cell phones (for their herders to use in emergencies).
The morning of our departure, Joe signed the Maasai’s guest book on behalf of our group.
We had laughed when we discovered that two of the Maasai and a member of our group, Jo, all shared the same name: Joanna (though different spellings and pronunciations). A photo of the group was in order.
When we planned our trip, Mark Thornton offered us the option of tent camping in the bush with local Maasai as guides for our walks, and we happily agreed. Our time camping in the Maasai Steppe Wilderness turned out to be one of the most memorable parts of our safari, a Swahili word that means journey. They did take us on a wonderful journey of their lands.