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This Blog used to be about the question: What is Science?
Now, it asks: What is Happiness?

Friday, November 13, 2009

Back in the

Message just come thru from Kasaba mechanic. I had almost forgotten that in 2 alpha I was headin' back to Durbs, committed to home by New Year. Daxi is ready to go! (Are you Ready? No...Naidu).
So 2 alpha will take the next flight out from Wilson and head back to the Bay asap!
What a wonderful respite I have had in Nairobi in the past few weeks. Managed to get a few mini-adventures under the belt, not least of which was a long imagined stroll along the crest of the Ngong Hills. From the beginning of the walk taken from the south end near the Leaky homestead one looks down on a sunbaked lake linked by a single dirt track to the main road south. Seeing this from the height of the Ngongs put another idea in my head. Get hold of a float plane and 'do' the lakes of Kenya. I will email the idea to alpha 5.

Flight log 091113(10h30Z/13h30local)
Dash 8 flying out at 14h30 to Arusha. That's it! Can get some nice aerials of Kili if the cloud is off.

Flight log 091112 12h30Z/15h30L

It's always about Kili. The first time was like seeing a dream. It was Kathmandu and Marrakesh all rolled into one. Flying high is like time travelling - you can glimpse a place that you can never go to. But Kili..that's real, I can, if I want to, climb to the top and stand there on the heights and be the lord of the Universe.

One day the pilot circled low and tight so we could see down the caldera.
I remember mostly the shock I felt at how little white there is on the top these days. Whether it's global warming or lack of moisture does not seem as relevant as the sadness I felt at the certain disappearance of this vast incongruity so near to the equator. When the first explorers reported seeing snow in the tropics they were labelled as liars. Now the evidence is leaving us.
After the Anglo-Boer war had ground to a sickening halt, my late grandfather and cousin headed up this way for an adventurous 2 years. They lived and worked on an Apple farm owned by my Grandfather's cousins, a fmaily by name Pohl, and of German extract. Sympathies for the Boer cause had been high from the German empire under Kaiser Wilhelm during the 3 year war and here in Tanganyika the lads found many friends and many adventures. Oupa told us many a time of how they had trekked with 2 Askaris (guards) to climb Kilimanjaro. His cousin warned him about the spiders and advised him to stay armed. True enough they were visited by an arachnid or 2 the size of a large rat and rapidly dispelled of them with their revolvers. At night they would sleep up a tree with a roaring fire beneath for the lion and leapards.
This was all my old history in Arusha. Now it was a rambling and chaotic African metropolis that still had the feel of a one horse town.
The next flight out is only tomorrow. I have some time to explore so I acquired a bicycle and headed out of town with my camera.

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