Lowland Samburu Houses

This is one of the women who have helped me with my research project into the smoke cured fermented milk of the Samburu. This is taken within the woman’s house, a stick structure a few meters in diameter with a roof too low to enable one to stand up. There is one door, often narrow so that one has to go through sideways, and no windows. As a rule, in order to photograph inside the house, with permission, of course, I take material off the exterior, moving a piece of cardboard, for example, or a piece of plastic sheeting in order to let light in. I no longer recall the exact situation with this house, but I’d be surprised if what appears to be a window just below the roof is, indeed, a window. I can’t recall ever having seen a Lowland Samburu house with a window. The Highland houses up by Maralal, for example, where there is more wood, are bigger, often with multiple rooms, higher ceilings so one can stand, and the occasional window. This woman lives in the area called Lkisin, near Wamba.

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