Most of the tribes living in Tanzania today have moved into the modern era, or, like many of the Maasai, are blending a deep respect for their heritage into a modern life. The Hadza, though, are a tribe with truly ancient traditions.
That’s because the Hadza are one of the last hunter-gatherer tribes still in existence. Just 1,000 members of the group remain, all of them in Tanzania, and between 300 and 400 of them live almost exactly as their ancestors have for thousands of years, hunting prey with bows and arrows, foraging for fruit, roots, and honey, and living in only the most rudimentary of shelters (or under the open sky during the dry season).
Though many attempts have been made to “settle” the Hadza, they generally return to their traditional way of life as soon as donations of food dry up.
Maasai (not Masai) is the correct spelling of this noble tribe: it means people speaking maa. Masai was the incorrect spelling of the British settlers and has remained in current use. The Maasai have always been special. Their bright red robes set them apart visually. Spear in hand, they are calm and courageous regardless of the danger.
The armed British troops who drove the Maasai from their lands in the early 20th century had great respect for these fearless tribesmen. Up until recently, the only way for a Maasai boy to achieve warrior status was to single-handedly kill a lion with his spear. When you see a Maasai for the first time, you will likely agree with what Karen Blixen (Isak Dinesen) wrote about her experience in East Africa in her book “Out of Africa”:
http://costaricanwriter.weebly.com/uploads/4/4/5/7/4457093/3280363_orig.jpg “A Maasai warrior is a fine sight. Those young men have, to the utmost extent, that particular form of intelligence which we call chic; daring and wildly fantastical as they seem, they are still unswervingly true to their own nature, and to an immanent ideal. Their style is not an assumed manner, nor an imitation of a foreign perfection; it has grown from the inside, and is an expression of the race and its history, and their weapons and finery are as much a part of their being as are a stag’s antlers.”