Would you travel 1050km (one way) to shoot a wedding? What if I told you it was going to be in one of Kenya’s most beautiful National Parks and the couple was one of the most interesting that we’d met? That’s exactly what we did last month – Took two flights (the 2nd flight had 3 take-offs and landings at various National Parks in Northern Kenya) and drove for 5 hours to get to Marsabit National Park for Megan & Daniel’s amazing bush wedding.
We hadn’t met Megan and Daniel until that day – all our communication was via phone. They were a charming couple and a few months ago had already had their first wedding in Canada. This was Round 2 in Africa! Megan’s family had travelled from Canada whilst Daniel’s was based in Marsabit. It was a great mix of cultures – could not be more different. It was a beautiful experience to see 2 cultures come together and embrace each others’ traditions.
Marsabit National Park was home to Ahmed the elephant. Ahmed was rumoured to have the biggest tusks of any elephant and was giving presidential protection until he died of natural causes in 1974. As Daniel drove us through what was one of the worst roads I have travelled on, snaking it’s way up the crater walls, the red dust on the road slowly gave way to lush green almost rainforest-like terrain. And then out of nowhere, we had our first glimpse of the Crater Lake at the top of the National Park. It was visually arresting! A beautiful blue lake surrounded by green forest with some buffalo relaxing in the late afternoon sun. That evening, a bull was slaughtered as per local customs and the meat skilfully prepared for the next day.
The celebrations started the next day at 6am at Daniel’s house. It was a very interesting concept where everyone from town would come and visit the house at some point during the day and have a meal and dance. There was no wedding ceremony as such, however there were many presentations and dancing and speeches. Some lovely authentic Ethiopian cuisine later, we went to the Crater for a shoot with Megan and Daniel. I am scared of heights, and at some points, we were on the edge of the crater – looking down was not even an option! It was so beautiful, so lush and green. We had some beautiful golden light during sunset and shot until we started getting bit by insects and arachnids, and until the thorns got the better of us. After an adventurous drive, we got to Marsabit Lodge where a scrumptious meal awaited for us. Megan and David’s friends then hit the dance floor and the bar (not necessarily in that order!) until the wee hours.
Thank you so much Megan and Daniel for giving me the opportunity to shoot your wedding, and your hospitality in Marsabit. We hope to have created memories for you that you can share with your future generations! Love conquers everything. One love!