Backpacking to a Wedding
I attended a wedding from start to end. I think am a grown up now – the patience levels.
I never have, except 4 years ago when I was one of the bridesmaids.
So, this one was in Coast and I was determined to attend – any excuse to go to Coast.
And, mainly to support this guy who was my friend years ago when I was 6 perhaps or 7 years old.
We – me and Njeri, aboard the Thursday night 10:00PM Modern Coast bus bound for Mombasa. I was picked at the South C Total Petrol station along Mombasa Road, where I’d booked our tickets from earlier.
We caught up on a lot since it had been a while since we had. I slept pretty much the rest of the journey.
Got to Mombasa at 7:30AM, Friday morning.
As usual, there’s taxi and tuk-tuk guys wanting to get you to your destination. We ordered a Uber tuk-tuk.
Our destination being Tulia House Backpackers, Nyali.
I had loved the whole search of where to stay and how to get to Coast. That shit turns me on. I love to travel, and to search for viable locations and activities. While doing the search, I noticed two booking sites. Airbnb and Hostel World. If looking for an affordable and homely place to stay, these will come in handy. I found the most suitable place to stay being a backpacker-oriented stay in hotel. One because it fit our budget, two because we’d experience something new – sleeping on hammocks. And meeting people of other nationalities since the theme for here is where the world meets. Most of the time, we were the only Kenyans around (well except the Tulia House staff). There was an Israeli, Norwegian, Swedish nationalities – the few I interacted with.
The Israeli was travelling around with a few of his friends. They had been in the army for 2 years and then quit, opened a business and could now afford to travel around the world. They’d been traveling around for 2 months now. The Norwegian, she was pretty, Ethiopian style – chocolate skin with curly hair and tiny body. Her next destination was Egypt. The Swede lady, we left her at the hotel still when we left on Sunday, yet we’d found her there. She was travelling around the world solo. These people are random, easy and are good with budgeting. Am saying this because backpacker hotels are the most affordable stay ins which target people travelling on a budget.
They all had these huge backpacks that you see them stroll around town in.
I remember listening to Gary Vee where he said when young, early 20s, one should travel the world, beg for a place to sleep or work for it, learn different cultures, learn life through travel. What’s your take? What’s your travel culture?
We got to Tulia early before check in time, so we left our luggage at the reception and headed for the beach which btw is 10 minutes away on foot. It’s a magnificent basin of white sand and clear waters. There were only a few people you’d think we’d intruded a private beach. We did the kawaida beach things, you know; touch water with your feet and run away, sort of a cat and mouse game between you and many waters, sit on the sand, take pictures of your feet facing the ocean, dance on the beach.
Back at the hotel, we checked in and Njeri was too ‘jetlag’ to go out. I on the other hand, had to explore.
I refreshed and off I was to Mombasa. Google maps as usual came in handy. First stop for me was Kongowea market. Yes, I did get amazing items at an affordable price. There’s this guy that struck my attention.
Me: Habari, belt ni how much
Seller: 50 shillings
I search through to see which one catches my eye, I picture my outfits, which one goes with what, which one needs a belt. I see a black one but I have that already, there’s a multicolored one, and since I like playing with colors these days, it’s my pick. Check my wallet and take out a 500 shilling note.
Seller:(gives me a weird look) hauna pesa ingine
Seller: (in a not so friendly tone) basi itabidi umeacha
I look at him trying to get the joke but no, this guy is for real. He can’t leave his shop to go get change for a customer. Yet he woke up in the morning to come sell items. The irony!
I left the belt and skipped my way to the next shop.
From there I went to fort Jesus to chill with George Karanja, you remember him from my post Art for 21 Years. We drunk madafu as we caught up. He now has an Instagram page culture studio, good stuff there.
Took a tuk-tuk back to Mombasa town then a Nyali bound Matatu to Tulia, my home for the weekend. Tulia has amazing chill out activities. From pool table, swimming pool and a conducive environment for tulia-ing.
I must say, I was excited. Excited to dress up, excited to attend a friend’s wedding and excited to attend a wedding in coast. Tuk-tuks are the main budget means of transport here. We aboard one and off we were to church. Amazing thing is, we reached just in time for the service to start. Everything went just right. No one stood up to object the union, no one freaked out to not say their vows, no one fought for food or cake. The couple was given a bed – to signify the girl leaving her parents home to go live with her husband.
Later we retired back to Tulia, played pool and had a chilled evening.
Return Day; Sunday
We’d booked train tickets in advance meant for 3:15 pm departure time.
We woke up, packed and prepared then went to the reception to check out. While there we asked what the best means was to get to the Miritini SGR Train Station. Turns out there are certain Matatu Saccos that pick people up from hotels on that route that are bound for SGR at an affordable fee. Imagine the relief. It was to get there at 12:30 pm.
Got myself busy by exploring the other half of Tulia, the gate just opposite where we were staying. Make sure to see both sides of Tulia when you visit. Amenities include; WIFI, pool table, swimming pool, reading lounge. You can carry your own tent and camp there at a cheaper price. They offer tent accommodation and hammocks too. Then there’s shared dorms and private rooms. The link to their website; click here. They breed birds including peacocks. I waited for it to up its beautiful wings but it did not. Maybe next time because I’m definitely going back.
The more you travel the more you learn the art of travelling.