Kilimanjaro, literally the "mountain of snow" is a place where God was said to live, a provider of water for the local Chagga people and, today, the single largest source of tourist dollars in a struggling economy.
But the ice is melting and once it is gone there is a real concern that the 20,000 tourists who come to climb the mountain each year will be gone too. After all a mountain without snow in Africa is just another mountain.
Well, I hope it will never be seen as just another mountain. There's an old saw in the East Bay, hard to verify immediately, that only Kilimanjaro exceeds our beloved Mt. Diablo in total amount of visible landmass from the summit. The Snows of Kilimanjaro was the first Hemingway story I ever read. When I made impatient inquiries about destinations as a child, my sister would often tease me by singing, "Kilimanjaro!" in a particular tune. Sad those snows might not be there when I get there.
Spring 2006: Guest Bloggers!
Rishi | Scott | Emily
Echan | Robert | ToastyKen