Last Day of Kigali-Nairobi Segment Turns Sour

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

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Where I stayed
Swara Safari Hotel

Flag of Kenya  ,
Saturday, November 19, 2011

Breakfast was at 6:30.  Endry made some African porridge...Juliet ate some and I tasted it but didn't like it much at all.  We packed up like pros and were on the road in no time.  The road was very rough and bumpy as we retraced the route.  then we headed for Nairobi.  Rain broke out before lunch and we ate sheltered by a "curio" shop.  Curio shops are often situated by lunch stop shelters.  I can see how that might have developed.  The vendors are quite aggressive in their approach to prospective buyers.  Sometimes it is not easy to dissuade them of your lack of desire to buy.  Of course, some always succumb.  I have held back because of space & weight of my bags.

Nairobi has a lot of suburbs and lots of bad traffic.  The city center has big modern buildings where we found our hotel and were greeted with hot towels after our grueling drive in the Nairobi traffic.  We handed over our passports for registration as we were awed by this posh hotel...even its bathrooms were deluxe.  At some point when we had all gotten used to the idea of a luxury hotel, we were informed that we didn't have reservations.  Something was worked out because they had some rooms available, but when Geckos was contacted, they would not approve our staying at this hotel.  Some of our people had documentation that this was their hotel but that didn't help.  Instead we were sent to another Acacia Camp (hotel with campground supposedly owned by Gecko's) across Nairobi - past the airport.  Fiona was afraid she would miss her plane- which she ended up doing anyway because of the horrible traffic.

There was an accident with a bus, truck and car and the road was jammed.  Apparently there are only a few major roads through Nairobi so every one that was going in this direction had to go this way.  With the rain and mud, cars and trucks were sliding all over.  We spent over 1 1/2 hrs to get to the 2nd hotel only to find out that some of us had to go to yet another hotel.  Juliet and I were included in this number, but it was for the best since this hotel was better than Acacia Campground Hotel.

We had an 8 pm reservation at a restaurant called Carnivore that Nick was set on getting to.  Frederick had arranged a special taxi for us but they got stuck in traffic as well and no one else would take us because of the traffic and accidents so we ended up with a specially catered dinner in our hotel.  It was supposed to be lamb but some thought it was also goat - Endry's goat being much superior.  All of our group came but Fiona and Nick.  I think the hotel restaurant started roasting the meat when we ordered dinner.  Dinner was fine.  I wrote my postcards to send from the hotel before leaving Kenya.  Time for bed..

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