Kenyan Tea

Trip Start Nov 03, 2011
Trip End Dec 10, 2011

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Where I stayed
Tea Hotel
What I did
Tea Plantation Tour

Flag of Kenya  ,
Sunday, November 13, 2011

I can't remember yesterday so well.  It was not long before we got to the border with Kenya.  We were surprised to change our money before the border.  Then on the Kenyan side we had to get visas and I included a dirty $50, and it got rejected.  Joe was nice enough to supply a crisp one while I went back to get a clean one from my stash.  I got my Ugandan money changed into Kenyan.

The scenery changed as well -- we started seeing round houses without thatched roofs (hmmm,in the photos they look thatched??) and hills with different crops.  It was very scenic.  We continued through the Western highlands of Kenya, the agricultural heartland of Kenya.  After a long day of driving, we passed through an area of vast tea plantations around Kericho where our next stop, the Tea Hotel,  would be on an actual tea plantation.

Once at the Tea Hotel (and informal campground), we went on a quick tea tour and saw the chest high tea bushes trimmed so the pickers didn't have to stoop.  They pick about 50 kilos of the light green leaves at an average of 9.52 per day in wages (only now I cannot remember in what currency that was).  The workers get housing, medical care and schooling for the kids.  It was quite beautiful as we got to walk in the tea bushes at dusk.

Juliet and I elected to put up our tent and we could use bathrooms in the crew's room or the hotel lobby if it was open.  Robert & Mathieu put up their tent and Sumudu had hers all to herself.  That was about it for tenters, but Nick may have put his up too.  The rest of the group were in the old tea estate buildings.  Outside the hotel reception, there were some craft vendors who really wanted us to see their stuff.  Juliet got some terrific bargains on little soapstone hippos.

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