Maasai Tribe

The tribal leaders son invited us into his humble home to meet his wife and child, and to sit and chat. While chatting with him he revealed that young boys in the tribe are sent into the wilderness at the age of fifteen years to slay an aging male lion. The aging males are typically thin, they have lost many teeth and are less capable of chasing prey. The aging males go into villages at night and pick easy prey from the heards, or it will take a human for food.

 

When a male lion has aged out of his pride he is said to be the meanest of them all. The tribesmen know they must hunt him or be hunted by him so they send a boy warrior to remove the threat. If the boy returns to the tribe a success then he can be called a man and is ready for marriage. If, however, he is unsuccessful he will not return to the tribe at all.

When a male returns from the bush having slayed a lion, he is ready for marriage. All brides are chosen from different tribes so the bloodline does not become tainted. Once a male selects a bride he must pay her family with livestock. When the couple marries, it is the wife's responsibility to build the home on tribal land. The homes are made with strong sticks and mud throughout. The mud shelving and a mud furnace is shown below. 

Below is a picture of the furnace that burns day and night. The smoke inside is heavy but they are accustomed to it. The fire helps to control the mosquitoes inside the home. There are two windows for light and air, however, the room was dimly lit inside. There was one solar panel used for light. We were told that it was a gift from a friend who had visited them from California. 

Towards the end of our visit one of the tribal members came in to bring tribal jewelry for us to see and purchase to support the tribe. They were pretty nice pieces and we bought most of it and he gave us a few of them.

Here is a picture of his wife and child in what was considered the children's room which was adjacent to the livingroom. In this space she nurses the infant and comforts him. It is also where the older children sleep who were unseen in this photo. The baby was the cutest and we were amazed by how modestly they live.

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