After 4 consecutive days of speed bumps and hard work, we took a day to rest and bond together. We have felt so much disappointment and grief for what we have seen, and today was a chance to collectively think and process what we have seen. This was our chance to laugh and spend time together.
In the morning we went to Kazuri Beads where the business professors taught about business. They gave us a tour of the meticulous and elaborate process of creating the beads and jewelry. It was really fascinating to learn where these women have come from and understand each of their stories. Kazuri employs women from the slums and many are single mothers, yet another place that employs women who don’t have an education or way to provide for their family. We spent a lot of time shopping after our tour and we also got to sit down and help them make the jewelry. A few girls approached the women and got to hear about their stories and how long they had been working at Kazuri. The women then began to give those girls orders that had to get done and they got a chance to help them work, which was an incredible opportunity to learn from the women.
After Kazuri, we went to lunch at Tamambo gardens which is a restaurant settled on the former coffee grounds of the famous Karen Blixen’s farm. It was absolutely beautiful and we got to enjoy each other and reflect on all that had happened on the trip. Our main goal was to not talk about business during this hour, which was a wonderful escape for a little while. Some of the girls also bought some paintings that were on display and got pictures with the painter himself.
We also went to Karen Blixen’s historic home, one of Melanie’s favorite places to visit. We spent a lot of time climbing trees, taking pictures, and acting goofy together. The best part was seeing Melanie relax and enjoy herself after a stressful week. It was really special for us since we had watched the movie Out of Africa together and we are all inspired by Karen’s story. We secretly hoped some of her awesomeness would rub off on us!
We returned to the hotel with a party waiting for us! The staff of Grace House had decorated everything and set out tables for us all to eat dinner in the courtyard. We had a DJ and authentic African dancers and band. We watched the show with some African food, but it began to pour on the dancers. Once they were finished, the staff came out to dance and even in the rain we ran out to join our friends that we have grown to love. The rain began to pour harder, but that only made us dance harder too. We all stayed out, completely soaked, and had such a great time with everyone. Dancing in the African rain made this day sink deep within our hearts.