Sam Floy

Interesting posts about start ups, East Africa and fried chicken

Category: Travels (page 1 of 12)

Cycle trip arranged via social media 🚲 πŸ΄σ §σ ’σ ³σ £σ ΄σ ΏπŸ“±

Last week I undertook a two-day bike ride in northern Scotland to travel up to my friend’s wedding. 

The whole process of getting it sorted was pretty fun, and the ride itself was incredibly enjoyable, passing a variety of terrain and affording some lovely interactions with very generous Scottish dwellers.

This is a bit of a longer read than normal.

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Relying on people vs “the system”

I’ve hosted a few visitors from Europe here in Kenya recently which has exposed a bit of a cultural difference: how people make bookings.

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2018 in review

As this is the last newsletter of the year it feels like I should at least make some attempt to write something thoughtful.

Rather than a chronological run through of what’s been happening, I’ll instead share some things I’ve been thinking about, which you might find interesting to read.

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Hiking Mount Kenya

Last weekend I climbed Mount Kenya.

It was 4 days and 3 nights in the National Park on the equator and offered up some pretty phenomenal views. See here

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Hypothesis on sugary tobacco vs sports betting in Kenya

There’s a concept in economics of substitute goods. Basically if the demand one for one product goes, demand for another goes down.

If pasta becomes super popular then you might see sales in couscous go down (substitute good). Other products though, such as tomato sauce, may instead go up in demand (complementary goods).

Anyway, two conversations last week made me think there might be such a relationship going on between two slightly contentious products in East Africa, which could have some interesting implications…

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What is your normal?

A friend has just quit his job and started travelling. This week he told me a story of an Italian guy he met living on the Kenyan coast who is currently building a boat.

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Shoes

For the most part, I dress incredibly boring.

I’d say 280/365 days a year I wear the same (type of) blue chino trousers, and will rotate a few basic T-shirts/ jumpers depending on the season. Which in Kenya, ranges from bit chilly – quite hot – pretty hot.

When it comes to shoes, I was very much the same, basically something comfortable (yet undistinctive).

This changed when I met Julius.

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Mini Mango Adventure

A series of events led to me being able to take a day off work yesterday.

I decided to spend it going to a mango farm about an hour out of Nairobi to scope out its commercial potential.

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Lunch with my cleaning lady

On Saturday I went for lunch with the lady who cleans my apartment and her sister at their home in Kibera: one of the big informal settlements in Nairobi.

The conversations and anecdotes that came from our afternoon were rich with the colour of the lives they’ve both lived, and the families they’re raising. On their permission, I’ve written the below.

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The Edges of Society in Kenya (in a weekend)

Over the Easter weekend a good friend (Ben) and I spent a couple of nights an hour out of Nairobi. Despite the primary goal of “getting a way from it all”, the short excursion ended up showing several aspects of Kenyan culture not always visible from the day to day:

The Chinese influence, a hangover from the colonial era, and the emerging Kenyan middle class.

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