Today we started off on an orientation tour of the Gazi Bay mangroves, aptly named the "Mangrove Marathon." What started as a leisurely stroll through open mangroves ended up as a tough slog through
knee-deep mud climbing over and under mangrove branches and roots. Whilst it was hard going, we all agreed on how amazing the ecosystem was. After cleaning up and tending to a few cuts and scrapes, we went to the Gazi Women's Mangrove Boardwalk, which is a community-run conservation and education project. It is run by the women of Gazi as an alternate source of income. The women provided us a delicious lunch and took us on a tour of the boardwalk. After we were rested and refreshed, the mangrove marathon continued where we met local fishermen and saw the effects of erosion on the mangroves. After a well deserved shower, we met up with Hmissi Kirauni, a Gazi village local who took us on a tour of the village and very generously showed us through his own home. Everywhere we went we were greeted by children calling “jambo” (hello). Gazi village is extremely beautiful and full of the most happy and friendly people. Mama Nico (our own personal chef) cooked up a delicious biryani for dinner, which was followed by a talk from Hmissi about life in the village. He shared stories about his life as a fisherman, working for KMFRI (Kenya Marine and Fisheries Research Institute), and how he met and married his beautiful wife Popo. It was a fantastic end to a fantastic day.
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