Bye Summer, Welcome Winter – Rain and planting kicks off in Nandi Hills

Dry season is over. April rainy season has began. Tilting and planting kicks off and Nandi farmers have kissed hunger and expensive expenditures of dry season good bye! Kalenjin is known for massive agricultural production, and during this rainy season, farmers are busy planting, making maximum use of this golden season.

Among plants that are planted now include maize, beans and other various types of vegatables like kales, cabbage and spinach. The first phase of plantation is gone and those farmers have seen buds and sprouts of the first seeds. 

Brief History

The staple Kalenjin food is ugali. This is a cake-like, starchy food that is made from white cornmeal mixed with boiling water and stirred vigorously while cooking. It is eaten with the hands and is often served with cooked green vegetables such as kale. Less frequently it is served with roasted goat meat, beef, or chicken. 

Frequently used drink during meals is always fresh milk or mursik.

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Calf Grazing

Before the introduction and widespread diffusion of corn in recent times, millet and sorghum (native African grains) were staple cereals. All of these grains were, and still are, used to make a very thick beer that has a relatively low alcohol content. Another popular beverage is mursik . This consists of fermented whole milk that has been stored in a special gourd, cleaned by using a burning stick. The result is that the milk is infused with tiny bits of charcoal. Lunch and dinner are the main meals of the day. Breakfast usually consists of tea (with milk and sugar) and leftovers from the previous night’s meal, or perhaps some store-bought bread. Meal times, as well as the habit of tea-drinking, were adopted from the
British colonial period. Lunch and dinner are both eaten late by American standards. In addition to bread, people routinely buy foodstuffs such as sugar, tea leaves, cooking fat and more.

Employment Opportunities this season:

This season has brought temporary employment opportunities in the Kalenjin lands. Tilting, planting, herding, weeding and harvesting are among jobs created this season.
In Kalenjin societies, much of the work, is traditionally divided along gender lines. Men are expected to do the heavy work of initially clearing the fields that are to be used for planting, as well as turning over the soil. Women take over the bulk of the farming work, including planting, weeding, harvesting (although men tend to pitch in), and processing crops. Women are also expected to perform nearly all of the domestic work involved in running a household. Men are supposedly more involved with herding livestock than with other pursuits. However, when men are engaged in wage labor away from home, women, children (especially boys), and the elderly care for animals just as often as men. 

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