Little Kikuyu girl at a wedding near Thika; late 1970s. The bottle of Fanta fizzy orange is about 10 inches tall – and evidently her treasure!  She’s chewing the white Fanta bottle top while wondering with horror what this fat mazungu (white man) with his camera is about to do to her!

I enjoyed my years in Kenya.  The people were hospitable and friendly, and humorous too.  And the children were an especial delight.  I was often off the beaten track, far from the tourist areas, collecting bird records for the bird atlas I was later to write, and for many of these small children I may have been the first white person they had ever seen – or at least seen closely.  When I neared habitation, they would rush out and swarm around me – “Mazungu, mazungu!” – brimming over with vitality and fun, and vast curiosity too.  I remember them touching my skin, and especially my hairy arms, with great wonder.  Very human moments; certainly moments to treasure, all these years later.

And, as always, “all these later years” brings thoughts.  Let’s say this was 1980 for ease of maths (never my strong point, despite having worked in data management and analysis for 20 years …), so that’s 40 years ago so, if she has survived – always that big if … –  she will now be a woman of 43 or so, with her own children probably.  I wonder if she will still remember that far off wedding day? Probably not but, anyway, here she is.

Click onto the image to open a larger version in a separate window.

Technique: OM-2 with 75-150 Zuiko lens; colour slide film.


I’m re-posting photographs that I took in Kenya over 30 years ago.  You can find more context here .  Click onto the “Archive Kenya” tag (below) to see more of these film images from Kenya.


About Adrian Lewis
Photographer - using mono, colour and combinations of the two - many types of subject, including Minimalism, landscapes, abstracts, soft colour, people, movement, nature - I like to be adventurous, trying new ideas, working in multiple genres. And I've a weakness for Full English Breakfasts and Duvel golden ale, though not necessarily together.


  1. bluebrightly says:

    Fantastic photo AND narrative, Adrian, Thank you. 🙂


  2. Helen Cherry says:

    Moments to treasure indeed. The shoes are jarring and that adds even more to the photograph


  3. Sonali Dalal says:

    Absolutely adorable. Colours so much similar to my country.


  4. krikitarts says:

    Looks like one splash of orange deserves another. And, wow, those shoes are something else.


  5. The dress matches the Fanta! She planned ahead. I hope she has survived and is well and that she has a little girl with an orange dress. 🧡


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