Dear mother -
I wish to assure you that every reasonable precaution has been taken to guarantee our safety and health on this most exciting of vacations.
The enclosed manifest is testament to my ongoing desire for seeing this journey through to a successful outcome - the summiting on Africa's highest point. Abercrombie and Kent has answered these queries to my satisfaction.
I could not tolerate your whimsical and somewhat illogical fear of Africa to upset our travel plans. And so without any desire of making you worry we set about planning this trip in secrecy. The itinerary is provided for your amusement only - I am not returning to America early for any reason short of death.
Again the appropriate vaccinations have been administered; the relevant medicines are being ingested on schedule; Dale and Dana are in good, VERY good physical condition for this hike; and I am terribly pleased to accompany them on this trip largely funded by Dale.
Please note we travel via Paris both ways to Nairobi, Kenya on Air France. We met in Los Angeles Wednesday evening for the international flight to France. There is a 5-6 hour layover at De Gaulle airport both inbound and outbound (the latter on Bastille day, July 14). Dale agrees this is not enough time to clear customs, take the subway downtown and have a superb dinner at any of a handful of incredible restaurants (this is, after all, Paris !). Rather, we plan upon just visiting the Eiffel Tower and, time permitting, have a meal at the airport.
Dale's rigorous schedule allowed for only one extra day, and, rather than spending that day in Paris, we agreed to spend it in Nairobi on July 13. The rationale is that we will likely visit Paris again someday, but not Kenya.
We have visas for both Kenya and Tanzania, since Kilimanjaro lies in the latter nation yet most flights terminate in Nairobi.
Dale and Dana wish a "mini safari" for one-half day on the thirteenth, just outside the capital. I will attend the best seafood restaurant at lunch - provided the food is tastefully and hygenically prepared.
It is no coincidence that we return from the mountain in time for my birthday on the 12th - so I can celebrate in the immenently reasonable fashion of cake/pie with ice cream ... and more ice cream!
We will call you at the nearest convenience AFTER the climb. Until then please do not worry excessively - between Dale's medical bag and my experience the likelihood of injury on the mountain is minimal. Indeed, Kilimanjaro is claimed to be the highest mountain in the world which is accessible to non-climbers.