6/06/2014 Melindi to Mtae
“Papa Mose” opened his business on the date of his fathers death. He is the best businessman I have met. His interests include is guests houses, his farm and cattle. He is western educated and his three children are in college.
The ride was through verdant mountains today. Again, small villages and homes interrupt the sweep of verdant vegetation. The steep hills are sometimes terraced, and seem to reard the subsistence farmers in abundance.
Everywhere people are friendly, children are awestruck. When I stop they approach, cautiously, some smiling, some fearful. I kneel down and shake hands all around, play with Lisa, and kick around their soccer balls made of plastic bags bound with twine.
Then the adults approach, and I treat all with respect. Once we are all comfortable, I show them my rap star handshake, which makes everyone laugh.
The town of Mtae straddles the ridge of a mountain. The lodge has lights but not electricity, baths but no running water. Opening the wooden shutters on the paneless window reveals a 200 mile view. The sounds of children, cattle, chickens, and Swahili waft in.
The market is about a 20×20 foot area on the roadside where colorfully dressed women squat in front of plastic sheets bearing small heaps of local produce.
Papa Mose let wasps live on the ceiling of his dining room. When the doors are opened in the morning the wasps fly out and there are birds waiting there to eat them.
Sage riding ahead.
An attractive communal home.
Another African cottage for Leslie.
Mud and sticks construction detail. The clay soil makes this possible. This would be a lot harder with Florida sands!
Beautiful rock formations on the descent from Mtae.
A lone store on the road. Sage was shot with a slingshot close to here. She threw her bike down and chased the kid.