Dinner Under The Stars With a Spirited Performance By Maasai Warriors

Welcome to the 367th Tablescape Thursday!

One afternoon while relaxing on the deck of my tent during my trip to Kenya…

Mahali Mzuri Tent with a Large Deck for Lounging


…this invitation was hand-delivered to my door. Ummm, what have they planned for us now?

Mahali Mzuri Invite to Dinner Under the Stars


Promptly at 19:00 hours, I made my way to the main tent where the Mahaliz Mzuri bar is located. Since it was now dark, I had to be escorted by one of the Maasai Warriors who stand guard each night in the bush around our tents. We were never allowed to walk the boardwalks at night without an escort. I asked my guide if animals really do sometimes comes up near the boardwalk at night and if he had ever seen one. He said, yes, and he had once seen an elephant near the boardwalk. Yikes!

We all gathered in the main tent near the bar and were led down the boardwalk past the gift shop…

Mahali Mzuri in Africa 09


…past the pool and past the spa where guests can go for a relaxing massage.

Mahali Mzuri in Africa 01


The boardwalk led down into the bush and this was the scene we saw on that night.

Dinner in the Bush White on Safari in Kenya, Africa 11


What did they have in store for us this evening, down here in the bush?

Dinner in the Bush White on Safari in Kenya, Africa 06


Lanterns and luminaries were all around, adding to the magic of this beautiful setting.

Dinner in the Bush White on Safari in Kenya, Africa 05


A large bonfire had been created, lighting up the darkness and giving off  intense heat.

Dinner in the Bush White on Safari in Kenya, Africa 07


Chairs with warm Shuka blankets awaited each guest.

Dinner in the Bush White on Safari in Kenya, Africa 12


We all helped ourselves to a drink from the Bush-Bar.

Dinner in the Bush White on Safari in Kenya, Africa 14


Then we gathered around the fire to enjoy each other’s company.

Dinner in the Bush White on Safari in Kenya, Africa 01


Behind us we could smell the wonderful food that had been prepared for our dinner under the stars.

Dinner in the Bush White on Safari in Kenya, Africa 16


Dinner in the Bush White on Safari in Kenya, Africa 15


The tables were all lit by lanterns, such a romantic, beautiful night.

Dinner in the Bush White on Safari in Kenya, Africa 04


I have no memory of what we ate that night, I think I had beef kabobs. I’m terrible at remembering that kind of thing. Wish I had thought to take a photo of my dinner, but by that point I had put my camera away to enjoy.

Dinner in the Bush White on Safari in Kenya, Africa 03


Whatever it was, it was good…that I do remember.

Dinner in the Bush White on Safari in Kenya, Africa 02


As we sat around the fire, enjoying our drinks before dinner, the Maasai performed for us, doing several dances including one that would have been customary for wartime, one for celebration and one for love.

Dinner in the Bush White on Safari in Kenya, Africa 09


I captured a bit of it here on video. The first video is just a brief snippet of the performance. The second video is longer and shows the adumu, also known as a “jumping dance.” From what I read online, the adumu is part of a series of rituals junior Maasai warriors participate in on the way to manhood.

At one point they gathered us up from our chairs and we circled around and around the fire with them, joining in the fun of the celebration. I wish the videos were a bit clearer but there are no street lights in the bush, only moonlight and stars. πŸ™‚



Looking forward to the wonderful tables posted for this Tablescape Thursday!

Tablescape Thursday


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  1. Very cool, Susan. I’m glad you chose to be in the moment of the dinner and enjoy it without thoughts of blog photos. Thanks for having us.

  2. Thank you for sharing your adventures. Those tents are simply amazing. And I bet the whole atmosphere at night was just spectacular especially if it was a clear night. I would have been star gazing trying to find the constellations that you can’t see above the equator.

  3. What “shoes” did you end up wearing to the “jumping” dance?? What an absolutely GORGEOUS nite under the stars for you!!! franki

    • lol Well, I only had space to take two pairs of shoes on the trip, my tennis shoes and my Ecco sandals. I ended up wearing my tennis shoes since it was evening time and I wasn’t sure if it would be chilly out. It wasn’t chilly at all with the fire, though…just right.

  4. What a magical evening Susan with your cozy blanket, roaring fire, entertainment and dining under the stars! I told my hubby I want to go on safari πŸ™‚

  5. Susan – It has been so much fun experiencing your trip. I have even gotten my husband to read a blog for the first time as we enjoy your adventures. Thank you for sharing all of your wonderful days with us.

  6. Susan, what a glorious trip you had! Thank you so much for sharing these tidbits…I love armchair traveling! I think I may watch “Out of Africa” again this rainy weekend…..the sites and music are incredible. Thanks again.

  7. Linda Page says

    What a wonderful evening that must have been. Dancing with the Maasai! Wow! What an experience. Thanks for sharing.

  8. AuburnCathy says

    Fascinating…one question: Does the ‘warrior’ escort on the boardwalk carry a gun or a spear?

  9. Amazing Susan, what an experience! I would have been terrified out there at night!

    • I don’t think any animal would have been brave enough to come around with all those folks present. For the most part, they avoid any human contact. About the only time you ever hear of an animal charging a person on safari is if they have babies and a person is foolish enough to follow them at close range or stalk them…getting too close. I never felt at all in danger. It was just a fun, fun night. πŸ™‚

  10. Thanks for sharing the videos- it makes you feel like you were actually there!
    Now you have to watch Out of Africa- there is a scene where they dine outside and it reminds me of this a bit.

  11. How fun that was! I was amazed at that jumping. Most of them didn’t even look like they bent their knees to jump. I don’t think I’d even get off the floor without bending my knees, much less jump that high! Did you try to bring home one of the pretty plaid blankets? They created such a wonderful atmosphere for the dinner. I enjoyed seeing it.

  12. What a wonderful adventure! Everything looks amazing. The dancing and chanting reminds me of one of my favorite old movies King Soloman’s Mine.

  13. Norma Wagner says

    Thank you Susan for sharing with us your amazing Safari. It makes us feel like we were there with you. What an awesome trip. Can’t wait until we go to Italy. Norma

  14. Wow, what an amazing experience! Looks like so much fun and good for you for booking this trip!! Hugs, Brenda

  15. What a fun and exciting trip! This trip was an Adventure for sure! I can’t wait to see more!

  16. Again I say you did an amazing job writing and sharing this with us! I think we all feel like we went there with you. Thank you!

  17. How absolutely breathtakingly cool is this!

  18. Love your posts on Africa. You must read Out of Africa. It is a rare look at Africa. It is Isak Dinesen’s memoir of her years in Africa, 1914-1931. So beautifully written. It is a classic. The book is different from the movie and will give you a real look at living there. She loved Africa, and so do I!

    • Cyndee, it seems like the book is always better than a movie when it comes out. I’ll have to download the book to my Kindle. Thanks for the recommendation!

  19. Jane Franks says

    That was amazing, Susan! Are the fires (apart from keeping you warm) partly to keep the animals at a distance, too? Wow! What an adventure!

    • The videos are great. I have really enjoyed your pictures and these little movies. Wow, you stayed at a beautiful resort. You must be the only woman on the planet who hasn’t seen the movie Out of Africa. You really should watch it. You will understand why some of us have left comments referring to Robert Redford. The music and scenery are stunning. Don’t feel bad, I think I’m the only person on the planet who hasn’t seen the movie ET.

      Up here on the East Coast of Virginia we are praying that Joaquin keeps his distance and doesn’t cause any one any problems. Vikki in VA

      • LOL Vikki, I think you’re right! I noticed it had Robert Redford in it…wasn’t Meryl Streep the actress, or do I have that wrong?

        Stay safe! We’ve been getting tons of rain here. I hope our friends on the west coast have seen some rain. Wish I could our rain to them.

        • Yes, Meryl Streep is her usual amazing self in Out of Africa. Breathing a little easier tonight as it looks like hurricane Joaquin will not be an issue after all. We are saturated with rain already with more to come. I also wish I could send the rain out to the west coast. Vikki in Va

    • Jane, that’s a good question. I didn’t think about it night of dinner but I bet it does serve that purpose, too. I doubt any animals would want to come around where they see a fire blazing away.

  20. Marlene Stephenson says

    Did you get to bring home a Shuka blanket? What were they made of,or were they hand made? I was so disappointed when we didn’t get to see you dance. lol

    • No, unfortunately we never went to the market. I love plaid so that would have been a great souvenir. I would probably have had to wear it, to get it home. πŸ™‚

  21. In a past life, I’m convinced I was a Masai woman!

    • Do you love beads, Linda? They create some beautiful beaded pieces. They had quite a few in the gift store, all I could do to resist them.

  22. What a great shot of your deck and view! And the Masai performances are just so special. While preparing videos/photos and thoughts for this post, did that make it seem like yesterday? Or a lifetime ago?
    I echo the comment that it was nice to see you simply enjoy, and not try to chronicle everything for the blog.

    • Right now, it still seems like yesterday. The good thing is, when I’m videotaping, I’m still enjoying it, and I am glad to have the videos and photos because my memory gets worse every day. Looking back at the photos and videos is almost like reliving it, so I’m really, really glad to have those. I’d already forgotten some things until I saw the pictures and videos again. I do make time though to just “live” the moment, but I can’t tell you how grateful I am for camera phones.

  23. Almost feels like were right there! I bet you liked the red plaid seats! Thank you very much for sharing!

  24. I love going on this safari vicariously through you, Susan πŸ™‚ It looks like you really did it up right!

  25. This party looks great and Fallish! Very inspiring.
    What a fabulous and unique trip you had Susan. Amazing photos like in the movies. I always dreamed of a Safari, so thanks so much for taking us there, at least thru your blog.
    Sorry I’m late but wasn’t home all day long! Thanks for hosting and for sharing.

  26. Each of your posts make me want to go even more! And I never wanted to go to Africa. Do watch Out of Africa because Meryl Streep is her usual fabulous self and what’s not to love about Robert Redford??? The book, is, of course, excellent, too. I have to tell you I love your new Halloween scene on your blog above. I don’t know what to call that! I love the way you change it with the seasons. I just found you last winter, so these are all new to me. And Susan, I can’t wait to see your tablescape with your zebra glassware!

    • I need to watch it this weekend and just fast forward through any lion killing stuff. When I toured Karen Blixen’s house while in Nairobi, there were pictures of her and her husband staning over the bodies of the lions they had shot. I’m such a softie about animals, I don’t want to see that part, so I’ll try to fast forward through it.
      Thanks, Martha! I love changing out the banner for the seasons and holidays. I was running behind on getting it changed out for fall. There will be one for Thanksgiving, Winter and Christmas, too…so you’ll see three more before the year is out. When I get back from Italy, I’m looking forward to using those glasses in a table…should be a fun one to create! πŸ™‚

  27. Susan, I’ve really enjoyed reading about your adventure to Kenya!! An African Safari is on WH and my bucket list, too! Thanks for sharing this great experience with us. And thanks for hosting TT, too!

  28. Fabulous experience. I love experiencing your trip vicariously.
    Dinner in that setting would be awesome! A” pinch me”moment for sure. Love, love the videos. What a blessing for us to see. Thank you.
    Thanks for hosting. Don’t be shocked. I posted a tablescape after a long absence.

  29. How wonderful. I found my head was bobbing along as they were all jumping.

  30. Cyndi Raines says

    Totally awesome! Love the table scape and eating by lantern light, under the stars, with the campfire, ~ how romantic. The dance and hearing them sing in their native tongue, incredible. Thanks for sharing the moment!

  31. Such a magical trip…the whole thing sounds absolutely wonderful…Love the Shuka blankets!!!
    Were you able to bring one home?
    I can’t wait to see a tablescape using your safari souvenirs!

  32. I’d have loved to be right there with you. Those African nights under the stars are special .

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