I’m BACK, y’all!!!

Last updated on March 1st, 2014 at 05:40 pm

After three weeks spent in the African wilderness (and I don’t think you fully appreciate how literally I mean that statement), I am back where I belong! (And we didn’t get robbed while we were gone, so that’s always good!)

2012 Africa Trip—Coming Home—Unshaven Case
Our hero after a few weeks abroad, where different voltages can make using electric clippers a BAD IDEA.

It’ll take some time to get all my stories out about our trip to Tanzania, but to give you a quick synopsis of what went down, I:

  • managed to painstakingly summit Mt. Kilimanjaro
  • got some great wildlife shots while on safari in the Serengeti and the Ngorongoro Crater
  • experienced not-quite-so-subtle racism from some of the locals
  • got a little taste of Tanzanian culture; some great… some not as much
  • have a wealth of bags and clothes that smell like I’ve spent the last couple of weeks without any decent shower facilities (some might argue it makes me smell like a man, but I’d just say it smells like I have some serious laundry to do!)

For now, though, it’s all about unpacking, going through mail (of both the snail and electronic varieties) and getting back into the swing of things!

Viva la Toronto—it’s great to be back!

–case p.

Back to the Motherland

Last updated on March 8th, 2021 at 03:52 pm

Well, someone’s motherland, anyway. I think my family’s about 5 or more generations removed from having set foot on the continent of Africa.

But it’s here! We’re finally on our way out to climb Kilimanjaro, traverse dusty trails to see sights of rare animals (yeah, thanks a lot, humanity…) and get some much-needed R&R.

Unlike previous vacations, for most of the trip the Internet won’t even be an option available to me—for 2-3 weeks, I’ll vanish from the ‘Net entirely.

If work hadn’t been so hectic the last little while, I might’ve scheduled some new content for y’all, but life often has its own designs for us far removed from our control.

So as I prepare for more than a day’s worth of travel, I’ll take a page from Damien’s book and detox from the media I’m always consuming.

Have a good time one and all—I’ll be back before you know it! (That’s the way vacations usually work, don’t they?)

The second logo for Casey Palmer, Canadian Dad

Packing to Climb Mount Kilimanjaro

Last updated on March 8th, 2021 at 03:49 pm

As you can see, I wasn’t kidding when I said that the amount of gear we’d gotten for this trip is utterly ridiculous.

But it’s like I was telling a friend while enjoying a walk in the sunshine on Tuesday—you can’t put a price on safety or survival. Being a mountain climbing novice, if an expert tells me that I need something, I am not about to argue!

But part of packing for a trip like this is finding balance. Having a few weeks off from one’s regular life is an opportunity to do things they’ve always wanted to do—relax; write stories; catch up on some reading… you’ll have more free time than you might be used to!

But you’ll also only have so much of your stuff! Especially on a trip like this, I need to make more room for essentials and keep the luxuries to a minimum. (However, please believe that Sakshi and Trevor are going to get their butt handed to them in board games if I have anything to say about it!) It’s good that they already supplied us with packing lists; otherwise, I wouldn’t know what the heck I was doing and you’d hear stories of me on the top of Kilimanjaro suffering from hypothermia or something! Usually, I pack like this:

…but this time there’s been no time for fun cartoons or lengthy lists. No… this time, it’s all about seeing how much I can fit in that bag (making sure that it ends up being under 15 kg) and learning to live with less (one could also learn a thing or two from the process that my friends Trevor and Sakshi used to pack for a six-month trip.

I’m sure there’s a life lesson in here somewhere…

The second logo for Casey Palmer, Canadian Dad

Dragon Dictation: The Tanzania Chronicles #3

Last updated on September 30th, 2013 at 12:22 am

Sometimes you don’t really have much to write; those are the times where you need to switch it up a little. Today’s voice post represents stepping away from always trying to find something momentous to write about and sometimes just taking a good look at wherever I happen to be in life.

To further the point, I dictated a little bit in Dragon Dictation to give you an idea of its accuracy.

Here’s the original text:

Cercaria looking from the voice post I’m actually dictating this post in Dragon dictation to show you just how accurate it can be and I am trying to just broaden my horizons with the making of producing content what options they have for getting things done and maybe this will be another twilling my utility belt of things they use in order to get things done I hope you aren’t Chiu saddened by the voice to listen just how ill-prepared sounds will see how that works in the future this just one of those random experiments and maybe I’m hoping I don’t know I’m waiting for three weeks to be ouch for Tanzania hopefully I can Kopelson call him beforehand.

Here’s what it’s supposed to say:

So continuing from the voice post I’m actually dictating this post in Dragon dictation to show you just how accurate it can be and I am trying to just broaden my horizons with the making of producing content what options they have for getting things done and maybe this will be another tool in my utility belt of things I use in order to get things done I hope you aren’t too saddened by the voice post and just how ill-prepared it sounds we’ll see how that works in the future this is just one of those random experiments and maybe I’m hoping I can come up with content for the three weeks I’ll be away in Tanzania hopefully I can come up with something beforehand.

…obviously I need to work on my enunciation. We’ll see how this works.

–case p.

P.S. Hey, for you folks at home, if you’re looking to do a voice post, here’s some very basic rules you should think about following that I learned from recording this one!

  1. When you’re even a little congested, the microphone will make you sound like you bwoke your node!
  2. Remember that you may have more than one mic around you. Yes, there’s one in those fancy Apple headphones, too!
  3. KISS: Keep it Simple, Stupid! Or Short. Or Somewhat-Interesting. No one wants to hear you ramble about things that only matter to you.

Gearing Up: The Tanzania Chronicles #2

Last updated on July 15th, 2019 at 03:22 pm

One thing I didn’t anticipate when planning to climb Mt. Kilimanjaro is that the gear would cost nearly as much as the trip itself!

Usually, Sarah and I try to be a bit frugal with our decisions, checking whether we need to get top-of-the-line items in all circumstances. (Hint: When it comes to clothing and tech, the answer is almost always yes.) But with this trip, I sense that the difference between getting passable and great gear is a little closer to the difference between life or death, so I told Sarah that I was willing to pay whatever I had to to make sure that I’d be back in one piece.

I just didn’t realize how much that cost would be.

Take a look at this checklist. It’s the guide we’re using to make sure we have everything we need for the climb. At first, it might not look like a lot, until you go into a store—in our case, Mountain Equipment Co-op—and start asking questions.

When moisture-wicking socks cost $23 a pair, I’ll leave it to your imaginations just how much it’d cost to buy anything made up of more fabric than a pair of socks (i.e. most everything else on the list!)

$23.50 for two socks. Something about this just seems so WRONG.

Some people have asked—why didn’t we just rent? But we thought about that too, and because of how moisture-wicking fabric is made, the coating that keeps you from getting soaked in sweat (something you don’t want to happen when you’re exposed to the elements in tents at sub-zero weather) does erode over time, so the only way to be certain of getting good-quality gear is to buy it new.

Alas.

The small comfort I can get from all of this is that it’s a purchase I don’t see us making again anytime soon (if ever). Jackets for every seasons and reason, clothes that’re lightweight yet warm—it’s moments like these where it’s good to live in Canada, where I’m sure I’ll find a use for all of these.

–case p.

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