Friday, July 28, 2017

Trip up North (Day 2, part one)

Our first full day in Kano was full of sight-seeing and shopping.

But first, some interesting history about Kano, thanks to my parents' guide book:

My roommate, Jess, and I started the morning off with breakfast at the hotel: Nescafe instant coffee, a small omelette, fried potato sticks, and a scoop of a vegetable stew. Definitely Nigerian, but actually rather yummy!

The drivers came to pick us all up and take us to the Emir's palace. Our director has made friends with a man who was related to the former Emir, and the man agreed to show us around the grounds a bit.

He led us into the room where the Emir's Council meets and showed us the photos of all the past Emirs.

The current Emir
Then he led us around the back to the Emir's stables. Isn't the architecture and art throughout the palace complex beautiful!

Then to the stables...
This door leading to the stables is said to be over 300 years old!

Say hello to the Emir's horse. 

He is the only one allowed to ride him, and he does so when he goes from his residence to where he works within the complex--like a 5 minute ride. The Emir wasn't home today, so we weren't able to see the procession and all the fanfare that accompanies him.

Yep, I got to pet him!

From there, our guide took us outside the palace complex and across the street to his house to meet one of his wives and his only daughter.

At one point on our walk, our guide held this boy's hand as they walked. Super cute!

We met his horse, and C___ even got to sit on him!

There were at least six cats at his home and they all eat very well!
Another of his horses, in his pen within the family courtyard.
The courtyard of his home

Our whole group!

After visiting his home, we said goodbye to our guide and headed onto the rest of our adventure.

You may notice that all us women are wearing skirts and headscarves. In Nigeria, women have to wear skirts that come at least past their knees when they're in public. Although culture is changing and a few women do wear trousers in public, they're few and far between. In the middle and southern parts of Nigeria, Christian women don't always wear headscarves (although in ECWA-denomination churches, they must), but in the North all women wear something on their heads. So in order to not offend anyone we wrapped up with colorful scarves or fabric pieces that match our outfits. Yes, it's hot and yes, if not tied well they can come undone. But I have to admit it was nice to throw my hair up in a messy bun and not have to worry about it!

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