Wednesday, May 30, 2007

Getting Ready for Africa

This is a picture of our guest bed covered with clothes and supplies for our trip to Africa. Instead of making me psyched it ended up making me feel guilty. We're taking the trip to find about Africa and organizations that we might be able to support with time or money. We're also climbing Mt. Kilimanjaro with a National Geographic guide and a eco-friendly guide company. We're going in part to see the effect of global warming on the glaciers of Kilimanjaro. So we're going with the best of intentions. But seeing all the clothes and gear on our bed made me feel guilty at how much energy... clothes, oil, shipping goes into getting 2 people to Africa and then up Mt. Kilimanjaro. We've joked that getting ready for the hike has become a part time job but it really is and made me think. If we put this much energy and prep into a non-technical hike up Kilimanjaro, imagine how much effort goes into prepping for Mt. Everest. It is a very selfish activity, particularly if you leave family behind who will worry about you. Your adventure becomes their concern until you're safely off the mountain.

We try to use less in our day-to-day life... we don't drive an SUV, we bought an old house instead of a new one, we take public transportation whenever possible. So maybe this is a splurge, a life experience that interupts our normally restrained lifestyle. Maybe this trip will lead to an opportunity for Anne or I to make a more positive impact on the World and it will end up offsetting any negative impact of all this oil we are personally consuming to get there.

We'll see

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