Just back from a 72-hour work trip to Nairobi - and spotted this sign within the grounds of the Kenya Broadcasting Corporation. At least it's a statement of intent.
KBC is situated in a beautiful corner of the city - lots of space and trees - and just opposite is the Norfolk, the most colonial of Nairobi's top hotels, which trades off the 'White Mischief' reputation of Kee-nyah between the wars. I had a banana smoothie (well, it was too early for a GnT) on the Norfolk's "Lord Delamere Terrace" - which, as far as vices go, comes, I would contend, fairly low down the list (#48 gullible sentimentality for the least palatable aspects of colonialism).
What I liked most about Harry Thuku Road - home to the country's main university as well as the KBC and the Norfolk - was the storks. Commanding birds with a massive wingspan, who preside over the area from their perches on trees and rooftops. It was awe inspiring to see these magnificent birds right in the centre of one of Africa's busiest capitals. (The traffic was also awesome - I've never quite encountered such gridlock. The airport isn't far out of town, but it took two-and-a-half hours to drive there - and that was in mid-evening).
As the sun started to set, the storks would come to roost on the tree tops, offering a really sensational silhouette. These photos are taken on a iPhone, so not the highest quality, but you can get a sense I hope of why I took to the place.
I didn't see anything of the city apart from the centre - and a glance from a main road of Kibera, reputed to be Africa's biggest shanty town - but I liked what I saw: a confident, modern, friendly city which feels like it's going places.
This was my first visit to Nairobi, and I really want to go back and see more.
Andrew Whitehead's blog
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