Countdown to Kili: Just Give Me a Mountain

As a Kilimanjaro climbing prospect, you often get this question: What route will you be climbing?" Wait... I used to know this. There was definitely mention of a route. Of which we are taking the longer one, I do remember that. To better acclimatize. And they have nicknames, like the Coca-Cola Route and the Whiskey Route. I've personally been hoping they'll open up a Chardonnay one, myself.


Diving in the Red Sea

Red Sea diving

When we went diving in the Red Sea, the whiny kids were the ones on top, snorkeling, with me. I haven't been convinced yet to actually take up diving, much preferring to stay at the hotel pool and read my book and then look at all the pretty pictures afterwards, but the one aspect of diving that might convince me is the prospect of absolute silence underwater.


Snorkeling with Kids and Ready to Trade them at the Next Bazaar

There are certain things in life that you should not attempt to teach your children. Like riding a bike. Invariably, you will work your heart out, huffing and puffing beside that bike, hovering so as to catch it should it lean too much to one side, and when things go wrong, as of course they will, who is the person getting yelled at? You, of course. Snorkeling belongs in that category.


Countdown to Kili: The Test Hike

Groenkloof Nature Reserve is right next to Pretoria - and not far from Johannesburg - and makes for an excellent hiking outing. The city is all around you and initially it seems like we can't even have a conversation because there is so  much traffic noise. But as soon as you round the first bend and encounter a group of giraffes, you are immersed in nature.


Me? Getting into a Balloon?

You know me. I hate heights. Just thinking of that bungy jump Zax did still makes me feel weak in the knees.

So, as you can imagine, when the prospect of a family balloon safari came up in early 2010, right after we’d moved to South Africa, I wasn’t terribly enthusiastic.

But since I”m often accused of not feeling terribly enthusiastic about proposed activities, and since it seems my enthusiasm ... 


To Climb or Not to Climb Kili?

Ever since the subject of moving to South Africa came up, I’ve been harboring this secret idea of climbing Mount Kilimanjaro while we’re here. Before I even looked at houses or schools or even the crime rate, I was googling the different ascent routes up this legendary (in my mind at least) mountain.

I figured it’s the perfect mountain for me. I’m afraid of heights, so any vertical drops are out for me, and I’m almost as afraid of the cold, so a mountain that is situated in Africa has a certain appeal. Even though I’ve yet to find a really hot place in Africa, to be honest. ...