Today, we were going to go to the Agape women of the Meru tribe. We got a taxi to the dala dala “station” and got on a dala dala. It wasn’t too crowded but it gradually got more cramped. Strangely, I didn’t get carsick at all. I was a bit squashed but I was ok. We got out at the dik dik hotel. We got another taxi (a bit expensive) up to foothills of Mount Meru. We got to the Agape women communal center and they gave us some mint tea with milk.
The Agape women of the Meru tribe is a organization started by a group of 5 women. Heifer International gave them five cows and the first 2 calves went to their neighbors and they kept the rest. Then, the neighbors get six calves (maybe) and then they give away those 2 first calves and so on.
They made coffee, honey, cheese, and more. We were going to take 2 half-day tours. We started with a hike. We saw corn, yucca, yam, potato, carrot, and much more. After the hike we went to see how they make the honey, coffee, and cheese. We started with the coffee. Read Kieran’s post: coffee making process
After that, we saw how they “made” honey. The bees were stingless bees. They would open this log with an axe because it was sealed with wax. They would open these logs every 4-5 months. Inside, there is a nest (contains the queen bee) and then there are these little bulbs that contain honey in them. He stabbed the bulbs and the honey came out and oozed to the bottom of the log. The honey is called Nyori. Nyori is a special type of honey that can be eaten and can also be used for wounds.
After that, we saw how they made cheese. They first gathered milk, boiled it, and added cultures. Then, they waited for the milk to become more like cheese. After that, they molded it and it made the normal cheese you find in the store today.
We were going to go to the dik dik hotel, find the supermarket, and then go home. We got down to the dik dik hotel. then we got on a dala dala, which had 29 people in it! to go supermarket. It turned out that it wouldn’t take us all the way home, so we had to walk and walk and walk. After a while, we go really tired and we wanted to go home. We found this alleyway that we were pretty sure led to our house. We decided not to go down it because we were not familiar with this part of town, It was dark down there, and we were concerned about being mugged. We finally decided we were going to call Emmanuel (the same person who drove us to the dala dala “station”). Emmanuel came and we went home.
Below: dala dala
Below: The fields and the hike
Below: Cheese mold
Below: Kieran’s collection of things on the hike