The temperatures have lowered, and the night is setting in. A cool chilly breeze on my skin as I watch and listen to the night set in. The estate security lights are on, the blue sky is slowly shading into a dark ensemble, a slight glimpse of the sun still setting, a silence enveloping the estate, animals, and birds tucking in for the night. At the same time, the creatures of the night await to serenade the stars all night. It’s a cool breeze evening, good music tuning from my EarPods, and I just can’t help but reminisce the Machakos road trip.
While the year is ending, this has been quite the first road trip I have done this year. We can all admit that things have been thick this year. With curfews and lockdown, road trips and flights had become a thing of the imagination. But with the restrictions easing up, it has become possible to move from one county to another as long as you keep curfew.
So when the suggestion to do a road trip on Jamuhuri Day came up, I figured why not? A little break from the mountains and camps wouldn’t hurt. It would be a nice difference.
We hit the road Saturday morning; the intention was to be in Machakos by noon. As per Google maps, it was to take about two hours and a mad load of traffic combined with unbearable heat. The sun was demanding to be recognized that day. She sat there shining directly down on us and making the temperatures so high that even within the walls of a smart little or big vehicle, you would still have to feel her.
It helps to have good company, cold beers, good music, and the joy of just cruising down that humid road soaking in the experience. I never been to Machakos, I have passed it on the way on my way to Coast, but I have never been to Machakos.
We got to the Kyaka hotel a few minutes before 1 pm. Though the traffic was thick, the rest of the drive to our destination was smoothing and far more appealing when it eased. Micheal Jackson was entertaining us from the speaker, and we danced along, enjoying this hilly county.
The trees are mostly shrubs, which explains the heat. This county is made of that heat, just as some places are made of eternal cold. Machakos is hot, yet nothing close to a full desert. The shrubs and crops are still green. Even though there is a touch of dryness, there is still a touch of life and color and hills.
It feels good to be off the sun and heat and into a cool space. It feels good to just arrive. We looked for a series to watch – Little Fires Everywhere, ordered in, took more pints, and waited the sun off for a slow jay drive through the city. We took roads that showed different angles and patterns of Machakos. Roads that gave us a tour through the town, and down to A$L Hotel for evening cocktails and snacks before heading back to the hotel for dinner.
There is not much to the town, but they’re a few good joints you can try out. Here we soaked in our arrival and the environments while the night set in slowly on the town.
What makes road trips memorable is not tied entirely to the scenery but to the company as well. The people we share these moments and experiences with make the experience more memorable. It’s the late-night hotel restaurant laughs, winding down moods, cold cocktails, spongy fish fingers, and fries that makes the ending of the day soothing.
On our way out, we met some bikers who rode from Mombasa. Always a pleasure seeing bikers and their beautiful machines. Another pleasant jay drives back to where we were staying for the night. Kyaka. We got lost on the road for some time, but isn’t that the beauty of jay drives?
The hotel had called before to get our orders, and so we got there in time for our dinner. We were in good spirits and ready to just devour our dinner then go chill in the room. Well, that’s was the plan until we decided to indulge some more. We eat our food, went to the room, and pretty much blacked out until early next morning.
Luckily, we woke up early enough to binge on the series some more, laugh about funny experiences about last night, and enjoy the hotel’s hefty breakfast. We checked out a few minutes past checkout time and drove down to the People’s Park. Considering it is the most common thing advertised about this place, it was only right to pay the park a visit while we were there.
Yes! The park is an excellent touch to the place. It sits on a considerable piece of land and is beautifully designed for strolls, picnics, events, games, and relaxing. There are two restaurants in the park, ziplining, a maze, merry-go-rounds for the kids, a small race track, and about 4 washrooms spaced out through the park.
The place looks like an oasis in the county considering all the colorful flowers and different species of trees flourishing in that piece of land. There is a brighter splash of green in this park than the neighboring lands. One hour and a couple of minutes here, we were ready to hit the road back to Thika.
The heat wasn’t any better; in fact, it was hotter on Sunday. All that doesn’t quite matter when you have good company. It’s always the conversations in the car, the laughter and goofs, the music and cute dances, the quick spots, and the thrill of it all that makes road trips a different delight on their own.
Such moments are made of jazz beats and beautiful melodies, the smell of fresh roses, the feeling of cool breezes on your skin, the chillness of cold, quiet evenings, and a splurge of sensitive emotions. Such moments are made of chilly hip hop bits that evoke joy from your pores, that feeling of peace, love, joy rushing through your blood veins, and the aroma oozing from candles of happiness.
There is a subtle feeling of withdrawal after a road trip. It was an excellent ending to a good weekend and a very fun, thrilling experience. When I remember that county, I remember all the beautiful hills and roads that make this place a different taste from what you’re used to. I mean, isn’t that the point of road trips? To enjoy new environments and experience something other than what you’re used to? To catch a good, happy break from your already busy life? To enjoy moments with friends you hold dear? To just wind down? I think at the end of the trip, road trips mean to you whatever they evoked in you.
Beautiful memories are like songs to the heart. with every beat they remind you of the joys you hold so dear in your life. they cement relationships and makes them stronger. They bring out a vulnerability you never knew existed and most importantly, they make you happy to be alive.