The Women See Me Traveling With All Men And Can’t Wait To Get The Conversation Started

Posted on: May 11th, 2011 by Amy 3 Comments

After Vance’s roar of testosterone, we left Crater Rim and went to another guesthouse. I had met Condero, the manager of this guesthouse, many years before and was excited to see her. She is from the Chaga tribe,  who were once the keepers of Kilimanjaro — until it was made a National Park, which pushed the Chaga’s into the city. Now the Chaga’s are known for their business sense. Many are business owners; they are strong, shrewd, and charming. It is only recently that I have seen more women in the hospitality work force. For me, this is gratifying on many levels. For one, there is an automatic bond of empowerment. The women see me traveling with all men and can’t wait to get the conversation started.

We were so tired from having worked all night at Crater Rim that we were flat-out asleep almost immediately after arriving. We woke up around 10 a.m., still dragging our -sses, but hating to waste any time in Tanzania — which really is kind of an oxymoron…

The guesthouse in Karatu is simple, but nice, a local place to stay and very inexpensive. Vance was happy to see a bed and a toilet. I was happy to see my friend. She explained to me that the guesthouse is new and that she is the General Manager — which is big doings! She was proud because the last time I had seen her she was working as a waitress.  She explained that she is trying to focus on hiring women and introduced me to a young woman of the Maasai tribe. Amazing! I have never before met a Maasai woman with a professional job. It is shunned upon here as a cultural standard. The young woman was very excited to meet us. I asked her how it was that she was working. She explained that it had come time in her tribe for her to be circumcised and she refused. Female circumcision is still the custom here. The government has made it illegal, but the tribes follow their own rules. She went on to explain that most of the girls her age want it done because if they do not, they are treated differently. After refusing the circumcision, most of her tribe ignored her, so she left her family and came to Karatu to get a job and be independent. She speaks with pride of the Maasai, but also says, “why must I not enjoy myself too!”

3 Responses

  1. Hol says:

    How wonderful for you to see Condero, and that she is advancing her career. I so honor the young Maasai woman for her courage, and pray that strength carries her forward! I remember your 1st trip to Africa was to help empower women, not doubt this is, “gratifying to you on many levels”!
    PS. Vance, a strong manly howl is good for the soul! OX

  2. Keith says:

    Very good insight here. Condero seems to be a strong woman and an advocate of what you are attempting to do as far as empowering women in business. This must’ve made you fell very proud! The young Maasai woman, was her leaving her family for that reason considered a disgrace to the tribe? Do you know how her family felt about it and how they are looked upon now?

  3. William Nelson says:

    Amiee and Vance
    It has been great to follow your trip. You are open the door to a vastly unknown way of life to many americans. This is great.

    Keep the story coming. Cant wait to the videos.

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