Cameleer feature: HASSAN
Hassan was born as a fellow employee and friend called Hassan visited his father and so was named after him. This was the traditional way - to call a baby after an event, person or place that happens at the time of birth.
Hassan's father was a regal-looking gentleman from Parsaloi who was Head of one of our livestock bomas on the farm for many years until he retired and was head of his own family unit. Barabara's mother was a sister to Hassan's father, so he and Barabara are first cousins.
When Hassan finished primary school, he was brought in by Barabara to look after our newborn camel calves in a change of management policy. We were told he just needed to earn some holiday money to go back to school to do his secondary education. But here he still is, many years down the line, still ably working with the camels.
With Hassan's help and livestock knowledge from tending the family stock, we managed to turn around our calf losses to a much more acceptable amount. Once he'd conquered that, Hassan moved on into camel safari work and has done many safaris in the north of Kenya, including one to Ileret. So, like Barabara, he can claim to have walked the length and breadth of Kenya, from Ethiopia to the Tanzania border, from the coast to Lake Victoria.
Kathy and Bev first met Hassan on the Tembea Na Mimi charity walks. Bev in 2017, and Kathy in 2019. Hassan was one of the quieter cameliers in those days, but you could tell he was always thinking, and when given a chance to speak about his culture with us (which we love), he jumped at the chance as he is a very proud Samburu man. He is very thoughtful, patient, kind and always willing to help around camp and explain so much to us along the way. He wants us to learn and encourages us to participate. His laughter is contagious, and his smile makes us smile.
Not long after we arrived, Hassan told Bev that they have been friends for 6 years. She agreed and told him that once they finished this safari, they would have walked close to 2000 kilometres together. At that point, they simply agreed that Hassan was more like Bev’s “brother from another mother”.
He loves the camels and his fellow cameliers, and best of all - he likes the Montreal Canadiens hockey team! How could he not get along with Bev and Kathy?!