A group of 16 students and teachers completed a feat during the half term break that impresses me no end. They attempted the seemingly insurmountable task of climbing Kilimanjaro. This is no easy walk in the park and involved a great deal of training before hand including long 8 hour walks in forests and up mountains and across dusty pot holed Kampala Streets. They shopped for thermals, packed and re packed back packs, tried out anti altitude sickness pills, experimented with boots and band aids and psyched themselves up with t-shirts and group pow-wows. And all the while I sat by, on the side lines watching in awe. For about 5 minutes I contemplated going. And then I remembered that I am not fit, hate exercise, can’t fathom the idea of 5 days without a shower, vomited on my first night in Copper Mountain Colorado ( altitude 9700 feet, Kili is 19,430 feet), and that I am, despite my hopeful ideas to the contrary, quite a princess. So it was not to be and part of me is furious with myself for being such a wimp and even more in awe than ever at those who even attempted such a journey.
11 out of the 16 made it to the final summit but all are heroes in my eyes for putting one foot in front of another, one at a time, for 6 days. I applaud them and am fascinated by the resilience and bravery they showed. That and the ability to endure great smelly discomfort for nearly a week. And here I am, complaining about 2 nights in a tent. Pathetic.
Please read my friend Alison’s account of the trip. It really captures how it felt and is a great piece of writing.
Well done climbers!
I drove! I did it..all by myself. I am feeling very brave. I am pathetic.
It is confession time. I have not driven since the accident, except for one hair raising time when I had to drive F to the hospital. ( He had Vertigo, brought on by the whiplash from the accident, ironically). So today I had to go out and it seemed too silly to treat F as a driver, so I got into the car and with equal measures of trepidation and pride I drove out of the gate, all by myself.
Truth be told, I didn’t do a whole lot of driving before the accident but since then the fear has worsened and then I started to hate my wimpy self and my husband was looking at me like I was really useless. When someone looks at you like that, they can’t fancy you at the same time. So for me and for him, I needed to tame that Beast. ( Who is by the temprorarly resurrected until we find another car.)
I am the kind of driver that loves a big Canadian Highway, tons of space, smooth concrete, no crazy motorcycles that appear out of the corner of my blind eye. So for me Kampala streets are basically a disaster. It is like a driving video game, only not as fast and if you do hit someone then you lose more that a virtual life. You need to drive with peeled eyeballs and never lose your cool. People do not follow rules here. Rules are not something they need. It is total anarchy on those roads and it is scary.
And since I am feeling so brave I am going to mention that it is the very last chance to VOTE! Yes, the bloggies are closing tomorrow and don’t let the fact that I am in Africa now, and rather far from Latin America (Trinidad), bother you one bit. I would say that is reason enough to win!