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Barb and I first saw Kilimanjaro while bouncing south from the Kenya-Tanzania border in a rattletrap bus in September 1973. My mind stuttered to understand the mythical mountain on the horizon. Even after all my reading, I had no idea that the mountain was so large. Ignoring the lower slopes, most pictures just show the upper reaches, the crater called Kibo. Even from our distant highway, the real mountain consumed a large percentage of the horizon. Even from our distant highway, the real mountain consumed a large percentage of the horizon. Squinting against the equatorial sun, I saw the gentle lower slopes fading into the heat haze that covered the dusty land like a surrogate sky; then high and alone above Africa, Kilimanjaro rose beyond the miasma like an Everest. The spectacle demanded reverence.
I whispered to Barb, “The Spirit Mountain!” Starring with me, she just squeezed my hand.

– Gerry Roach - from Ride the Breath - The Songs of Kilimanjaro
Copyright © 2001-2017 by Gerry Roach. All Rights Reserved.
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