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Sunday, February 3, 2013

PEARL'S ASHES: #10--Mount Kilimanjaro

Our first trip to Africa was Cairo, and that was a near nightmare.  I specifically went this time to drop Pearl's ashes on Mount Kilimanjaro, for she identified with this mountain, as explained below.

In case you are considering an African safari, particularly to Kenya and Tanzania, here are some thoughts:

1.  Make sure you get your Yellow Fever vaccination.  You don't want to face the sanitation at the airport.  

2.  Visas can be obtained at the airport when you arrive, but sometimes the airline itself might not allow you to board their plane to these countries.  Thus, get your visa before you leave home.

3.  Take all the malaria precautions you can, but the Tauck tour guide indicated that in all the years she has been doing this, none of her clients contracted this ailment.  For the record, I saw one mosquito in a restroom and another that flew into the vehicle.  Also, while the tse-tse fly does indeed cause sleeping sickness, the specie in these two countries doesn't.

My plane landed at the Jomo Kenyatta International Airport in Nairobi, which began in 1899 as a train depot.  Henry Morton Stanley, for example, "found", Dr. David Livingston as early as 1881 on the shores of Lake Tanganyika, which wanders through several countries, including Tanzania.  Kenya, of course, is part of President Barack Obama's roots.  There is one line of thinking that Obama's father was assassinated in 1982 for speaking out against the government.  Nairobi is not a same place, as our hotel told us don't walk around town even during the day.

When Pearl woke up she regularly saw Mauna Kea, and thus felt a kinship with Kilimanjaro.  Or, maybe she identified with the 1950 movie, King Solomon's Mine, with Stewart Granger and Deborah Kerr.  An earlier version was filmed in 1937, a more recent one starred Richard Chamberlain in 1985, and then there was the 2004 Patrick Swayze performance.  

The flight to Mount Kilimanjaro Airport in Tanzania is about 50 minutes.  I had difficulty taking a photo of the 19,341 feet mountain because of my seat, so the above was taken by Arturo Gonzalez, who was also part of our Tauck African Safari tour.    This is a beer sign at the airport, with a Jacaranda.

This tree is now in full bloom, while the view from my room at the Serena Mountain Village to the left is also of Jacarandas, with a lake in the background.  The fragrance is wonderful. 

You will have noted by now that this was supposed to be my tenth ash ceremony, which has not yet occurred.  However, I have a few days left in Tanzania.


1 comment:

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