Just what I was afraid of!

3:00am, wide awake…laid here for an hour 1/2. Holy cow! Really? Then I heard Rich stir and I asked him if he was asleep…nope! LOL! He said “let’s run out to Denny’s for some breakfast”…lol!

So now it’s 4:30am…Rich is in the shower and I’m blogging. By 5:15, showers will be over, packing will be over and we’ll have another 1.15 hours before we can even go down for breakfast. It’s going to be a very long day!

Arusha – an end to a great day!

So our day started with a quick breakfast and a venture outside to find the golf course (Rich’s idea, but I’m game). Asked the front desk and she said “I’ll call security and have them open the gate”… we told her not necessary, we can see it, just the other side of the fence, we’ll just walk.

So off we go. Stopped by the security gate out front and he said “I’ll go open the gate for you”…and we said again, we can see it, IT’S RIGHT THERE! He said, are you sure? Yep, and we headed out the gate.

Well Dave, you remember when you told Rich to watch out for me and he said ok? Well he lied!! Lol! About the time we left the grounds, we knew why they seemed so surprised we were going to walk.

2,000,000 people in Arusha – about that many buses, vans and motorcycles – only 5 stop lights and trust me when I say there were NO tourists walking on the street. All the smart ones were in cars! Anyway, short walk down a dirt path with people and motorcycles driving every sort of direction to find out the course is for members only AND if we played, we would have to walk. NOPE! Thank God Rich agreed. So back to the hotel for a catnap by the pool waiting for our guide. Even our guide told us they don’t recommend you leave the grounds…oops!

Later took a ride with two of our guides into the heart of Arusha…and what an experience. Cathy and Jan? You remember when I was the DD in St. Thomas and drove all week on the other side of the road? Well let me tell you…not here! It was insane. I’ll try to post a brief video I took in a bit. I was trying to take pictures out the window and they told me to put my arm through the strap and hold on to it cause there is a real problem with people walking past the vehicle and just reaching in and grabbing cameras, purses, etc. Told them they would have to fight me for my camera.

We then visited the Cultural Art Museum and it knocked our socks off. Prices were outrageous but some unbelievable stuff. I so wanted a piece from a local artist who paints and carves out of wood and bronze. His paintings look better than photos…amazing but 850.00 for as painting? Nah. One of his photos sold for 180,000 (I’ll post pic). Wow!

Back to the hotel for another quick nap that lasted 3 hours. I just hope I can sleep tonight. I’m so excited for tomorrow I can hardly stand it. Flight to the Serengeti leaves at 7:00am. Rich is “breathing loudly” (lol) across the room so he’s having no problem sleeping. Better wrap for tonight. My adventures awaits…

It’s really only 4:35?

Maybe I should have taken a sleeping pill after all. I’m pretty sure I passed out before my head hit the pillow but it’s 4:30am and I’m wide awake. Just can’t wait to see what it looks like in the daylight.

There is a faint sound of a mosque prayer in the darkness. Talk about different. I feel like I’m on Homeland.

Learned a new word in Swahili last night – JamBo is like “hello”. I’m afraid I’m going to say Ola! Avanti??? Means “thank you”,

Come on sun!

We Made It!

Finally checked in at our hotel in Arusha and are trying to figure all of our electronics out. It’s 12:23 am on Monday here, 3:23 Sunday at home. Lord we are so confused with the time zone change.

Flight in to Kilimanjaro was dark and ride to the hotel even darker. But hotel is really nice. Glad we added a day here to rest before the Safari begins. My tailbone hurts already from the 18 hours of flying today, but couldnt have gone any smoother. So thankful we upgraded to the Economy Class for the extra space. And let me just tell you, KLM and Delta both really take care of the International travelor. All we did was eat, and it was GOOD! KLM was amazing even though we couldn’t understand most of what they were saying.

I think we watched a total of 5 movies – slept off and on. Rich played golf and bowling games while I stuck with Sudoku. And I’ll be honest and admit he kicked my butt at Chess.

Here are a few pictures from day 1!
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It’s finally here!

Just home from an evening at Krysta’s; pizza, wine & a shot to celebrate! We have laughed for 2 hours and looked at tons of safari pictures. The one with the lion’s face and paws against the passenger window is priceless.  I can’t believe it’s finally here!

Aiden is set with his board and just before we left he brought me his toy telescope and said “here Mimi…you need to take this with you”! My heart just dropped. Love his sweet nature so much.

When I got home, I pre-checked us in and “thank goodness”. Our itinerary says we leave at 1:30. Checkin says we leave at 12:00! We would for sure have missed our flight! How does that happen and we don’t know about it?

Before it gets crazy, thank you to my family for taking care of business while I am gone and for allowing this day to happen. I love you all so very much! And to all my dear friends who have wished me safe travels and silly thoughts…thank you so much for sharing this experience with me.

Stay tuned for the rest of the story! Africa…here I come!

Bringing Aiden along…

You never know what goes on in the mind of a child. Aiden took quite awhile adjusting to Paw-Paw being in heaven. Here one day – gone the next. He would ask when he was coming back. He even said once “can I go there”? Was heart wrenching. Carrie made the reference at Christmas about Zach being in heaven because he had all the toys to himself because Abbie and Isiah were sick and Aiden said “Zach’s in heaven?” Too confusing for a little guy to understand.

Anyway, since I’m going to be gone for awhile, I sure don’t him to wonder if I’m coming back so I decided to bring him along…

I made a “Follow Mimi Magnet Board” with maps and my itinerary so he can keep up with us everyday until I come home! He has a plane, a jeep and lots of animals that he can move around from place to place, just like me and Peep. He even has a hat and t-shirt, just like mine. Hope he enjoys it as much as I did making it!




Here I am!

Rich asked me to post a picture of myself so “his” friends could see who he would be traveling with since I had posted a picture of him and Linda. So, here I am with my husband Dave!

Starting to pack…

So my winter hail storm is over and I am pulling things out has turned into “really” packing. I guess I better since we leave a week from today!!! OMG…it is really almost here! Rich and I have decided NOT to check bags since we have a WEIGHT LIMIT OF 33lbs. How exactly does one pack for 13 days with only 33 lbs? My shoes alone normally weights that much. That is now my #1 stress button. What do I leave behind?