Saying goodbye to responsibilities and heading off to Africa.
Yellow fever jab? Check. Few pairs of pants I'd never wear in real life? Check. A gallon of 40+ spf and an equal amount of foreboding regarding the effects of equatoral sun? Check. Pocket knife to defend against political unrest in Kenya and wild dogs at our many campsites? Check and check. From the look of our overstuffed backpacks it would appear that Col and I are ready to make our African debute. Bon voyage, Chicago! This son of Chi-town and daughter of the second city are outta here! It's been swell! Love ya! (insert overdramatic blow of a kiss from 1930's airplane)
Okay...yeah...we're still here. We don't leave until this afternoon. Hmmm. Yeah.... Now this is a little awkward. I guess I can tell you a bit about our agenda so you can decide right here and now if it's worth keeping up with our blog. Personally I won't care if you bow out now - I get it. Another person's travel blog might not be the bees knees in some circles. No offense taken. Thanks for reading this far. Good to have you if only for a little while. Left a fingerprint on my heart and all that jazz. For those of you who are in it for the long haul, here's what you have to look forward to:
1. Our triumphant arrival in Johannesburg where we kill off our jet lag with a Tuskar beer and 14 hours of sleeping
2. The much hyped trip to Meru, Kenya to visit the Ozar's and help out at the school and orphanage. Surely a highlight of the trip and worth the 5 minutes of blog reassurance that we didn't take off with your donations to the Seychelles.
3. The harrowing bypass of turbulent Kenya as we make our way into Uganda. Parental note: there will be nothing turbulent about our time in Kenya. I promise Mom.
4. We go all Dianne Fosse on your asses and hike into Volcano National Park in Uganda to see the last of the mountain gorillas. Stay alive, mountain gorillas, we WILL find you....
5. Ideally some youtube worthy action from the National Geographic hall of fame: the Serengeti. Let's see if it's everything it's cracked up to be - and more!
6. SPICES! SPICES! SPICES! You want cardemon, thyme and rosemary? You bet you do. And we'll bring you all the live action from Zanzibar Island. It's getting hot in here!
7. Col's been talking a big game about schistomiasis - that parasitic worm released by fresh water snails. He claims it's as big, if not bigger, that Japanese encephalitias was in the 90's. We see for ourselves when we hit Lake Malawi mid-way through our trip. Surf, sand, snails with parasites - not to be missed.
8. Onward to Victoria Falls - aka: The Smoke that Thunders. We'll observe this World Heritage Site from both countries it borders - Zambia and Zimbabwe - and let you know which side to open your hotdog and souvenir stand.
9. Reunited and it feels so good...after Livingstone we join our friends Alex and Lee, two fellow travellers we met on a similar trip to India. They will be joining the caravan in Botswana and keeping us sane throughout Namibia. We will also be joined by a random British woman named Jo. We've never met her but hey - the more then merrier. Stay tunded to learn about how we left Jo on the Skeleton Coast...just kidding.
10. Namibia - birthplace of Shiloh Jolie Pitt - will be the birthplace of many of our good times as well. Don't know much about Namibia? Well. Keep up with the blog, friends. You'll know more about this desert-meets-coast former German colony if you stick with us. Note that Colin's highschool German class name was Lutz. I hope that comes into play in Namibia.
11. The final stretch - Col and I, tired after much camping and rare desert elephants, kick it back Cape Town and end our trip with a leisurely drive along the great Garden Route. Shark cage diving perhaps? The much talked about ride on an ostrich? Perhaps, perhaps. Only time will tell.
So - 11 reasons to stay tuned. We can't promise that we'll be updating this often as we'll be at the mercy of internet cafes. We can say that we hope you check in every once in a while and we promise to do our best to keep you informed. And we'd love to hear from you. Drop us a note along the way. Somewhere between reason 5 and 9 I'm sure we'll be a tad homesick. That's what the ostrich riding is for- knocks the homesick right out of you. But not even the almighty ostrich can beat hearing from you.
Alright - off to catch that plane.
We'll miss you! Keep the light on for us! Tell the world our story, etc, etc.
Much love - Mar and Col