Kilimanjaro: Arrival in Tanzania

So there are 9 of us on the trek: a trio of friends, a father and son, and the rest of us singles, totalling 5 men and 4 women ranging in age from 19 to 60. All British except for Giulio the Italian. The first night we spent in a beautiful lodge in the middle of a coffee plantation, in typical African style individual huts. A couple of hours relaxing in the sun by the pool, and a wander around the grounds, followed by a long briefing from Abraham, our guide, who seems lovely — competent but very friendly. I had a word about my medical conditions and he reassured me that I’d be fine and that in his capable hands there would be no problems. There are two ways of saying this: one is where the person doesn’t care or doesn’t appreciate the significance of it, and the other where the person is fully understanding of the issues, but is quite used to dealing with them. I could tell instantly that the latter applied. My only concern was that — and some of my friends will find this highly amusing — he had me down as being allergic to wheat instead of yeast. I hoped this wasn’t going to be a problem, but I sensed he didn’t really understand when I explained the mistake. Otherwise, the usual advice was given about drinking lots of water and walking slowly. The group started to gel over dinner and the toilet discussions started (best to get any embarrassment over quickly, in my opinion!). An early night at 10pm after repacking the bags yet again! I didn’t sleep very well due to excitement, or maybe sheer terror at what I’d let myself in for, plus having to use a mosquito net which I hate.

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