So a bunch of us decided to do a road trip to Naivasha, the idea being getting away to bond and have a good time. We were to leave for Naivasha at 9am so we could be at Fisherman’s Camp by 11am; have enough time to relax and enjoy a simple camp-site meal before heading back to Nairobi.
Well, the devil proved to be really in the detail because despite our best laid plans, we set off 2 hours later with neither the “mbuzi” nor the firewood! (This was going to be one very interesting day). The real “adventure” began as soon as we reached Fisherman’s Camp….
We got there (after 1pm) after stopping at “Mai Mahiu” to buy meat and immediately began a marathon: running around the camping ground looking for dry twigs and raiding neighbouring campsites for left-over wood to light our fire.
About an hour later the fire was up, so we brought out our giant “sufurias” (never mind that there were only about 12 people in the group) and began the lunch preparations. With 4 kilos of maize flour, we had enough to make the ugali and we had enough meat which we were going to um….fry.
But just before the guys began to make the ugali, it started to rain very heavily and as you can guess, we didn’t have even one umbrella! So here we were, caught between a rock & a really hard place wondering whether to hide in our vehicles & find a plan B, or brave the rain and try to salvage our outing. Although we were clearly not equipped, we were nonetheless determined and decided to stay. [At some point we were even leaning over the fire shielding it using our jackets & sweaters.]
Maybe it was the rain; or the giant sufuria; or the clueless “chefs”; or too many cooks spoiling the broth. Whatever it was……the ugali was a D-I-S-A-S-T-E-R. They used too much water to make the ugali, that 4 kilos of maize flour were not enough! Some of us had to rush into Naivasha town to look for more flour and in town, it was more drama looking for an open shop because most had closed early due to the heavy downpour. Meanwhile back at the camp, the rest of us tried to keep the fire burning despite the rain as we watched the flour mixture boil.
At the end of it all, we had so much ugali, it would have easily fed all the campers on site that day. As for the “fried” meat, well we didn’t have tomatoes, onions or any other ingredients except salt. So we just put it in the pot as it was, added the salt and called it “dry” instead of “fry”. We had our lunch at 5pm and the good news was that by that time, the rain had stopped.
The interesting thing is that we actually enjoyed the meal and the drama, which kept the USIU kids camping next to us well entertained. All in all, it was a great day because if nothing else, it proved that we are true ninjas. And we left Fisherman’s Camp a souvenir it will never forget: a litter-bin filled with ugali.