Modernization is fast spreading throughout Kenya and Samburu has certainly made notable steps towards this. However, the people of Samburu have found a way to marry the comforts of modernization to their traditional ways of life, resulting in a culture full of colour and distinct contrasts to the silent ‘code’ of westernization that is often confused to be the stamp or validation of a community living in modern times.
Modern, but not lost in westernization
Samburu county is one of the few places in Africa where the locals have held on to their traditional ways of life and culture. The name Samburu refers to the people forming the majority of the county’s population. The county however is home to other communitites notably the Turkana, Pokot, Rendille and Borana.
Young Turkana men stylishly adorned for the event
I visited Samburu County during the 26th Edition of the Maralal International Camel Derby and as always, I was glad to be back to this hot bed of cultural diversity; a true gem of Kenya.
Samburu, a true gem of Kenya
As promised, I got some shots in an effort to give you a glimpse and virtually connect you to what the people of Samburu are like.. 🙂
A moran ponders his next move while clutching to his cell phone
Keenly following the camel races at the derby
A happy Samburu dance
A war like dance by Turkana warriors
A combination of age, composure and beaty!
Morans ready to present a jump dance
Colour is never short in Samburu
I love my roots!
Samburu weather supports the Moran dress code
Friends of a feather, chat together
A wade through the mud to the derby celebrations
All set for the pomp and dance!
The soloist with an angelic voice
To show our joy, we dance
A man shares his tobacco with a female friend
I don’t wonna miss out on anything
Age didn’t stop her from being part of the derby
For her, life went on unperturbed
Wide rimmed neck pieces
Young girls show up for the celebrations
A male soloist leads a female choir
I made new friends. They live in Nairobi and always make an effort to attend and support the Camel Derby
On the journey of life
Alone in a crowd
Ladies in stylish hide clothes
“What say you?”
She hid, I sought 🙂
“All this fun in one ground?” She seemed to ask
Camels got gear too! 🙂
“Hold on, let’s smile for the camera..”
Colour that makes life beautiful
The stick is not only ornamental, but for utility as well
They rested outside the pub. My guess, it must have been full inside 🙂
She let me take her photograph and asked to see it
Her shyness couldn’t hide her beauty
“Is this bead out of line..?”
He cleaned his teeth in readiness for the pomp
It’s on! Boogie down!
“Did you see that..?”
His jacket played a good backdrop for this shot 🙂
Not even the grey could take away their colour and beauty
I had to blur him out to capture the beauties
The Morans’ hangout spot
Load on her back, but she couldn’t resist being part of the spectators
Friendship is, enjoying the derby together
The ladies man! They danced around him.
Selfie on a camel back
“We are with it!”
The crowd at the Camel Derby evening fun fair
This sturdy moran seemed to stand guard of his community.
The shots are meant to make you want to know more about the beautiful people of Samburu County. What better way to do so than to organize a vist of the county? Go experience the warmth, colour and energy of the Samburu!
Event: The International Maralal Camel Derby (26th Edition)
Location: Maralal, Samburu County, Nothern Kenya
Photography and documentation by: Macharia Njuguna, @macharianjuguna
Adventure and safari organized by: www.bunduz.com