A wide view of the Mars-like terrain of Wadi Rum. So Mars-like that it's where they shot The Martian. Tire tracks follow behind.

Is Not Chicago

shenanigans and tomfoolery throughout the world

The Dusts of Kilimanjaro Part II

October 29, 2010
Kilimanjaro Region, Tanzania
Read Part I Part II of III Unlike Dante’s ascent up Mount Purgatory, this didn’t get easier as we climbed closer to the peak. As we climbed higher and higher, the terra firma beneath our feet became less and less solid. Hemingway and others always remarked on the snows of Kilimanjaro, but they had obviously never climbed it… Read more

The Dusts of Kilimanjaro

October 27, 2010
Kilimanjaro, Tanzania
Part I of III “I just want to take off these pants and take a nap,” I was thinking. Oh, it’s 10am. Yes, 10am is in media res of the longest day of my life (well, technically two days, but since there was never more than an hour of sleep, for the sake of the story I’m counting it as one). The camp to which we returned, even more so now than the previous day… Read more

Kilimanjaro Photos

September 25, 2010
Kilimanjaro Region, Tanzania
I am almost done with my final blog post about my Kilimanjaro expedition. It’s an epic one that I’ll probably split up into two or three parts. In the meantime, here is the full set of photos:

Africa’s Jumpin’ Little Juke Joint

August 18, 2010
Kilimanjaro, Tanzania
This one’s mainly for the family. Both of my parents and several of my aunts, uncles, and cousins, went to Oklahoma State in Stillwater, OK. The few times I’ve been to Stillwater we would always go and stop by Eskimo Joe’s, a hip little restaurant (formerly bar) that’s been there since the 70’s… Read more

Blame it on the Diamox

August 11, 2010
Kilimanjaro, Tanzania
Now a little bit about my physical experience on the climb. Overall, my body did pretty well. I did only very minor training. Keep in mind that Kilimanjaro is not a technically difficult mountain; it’s not like Everest or K2 where you’re climbing up glaciers with with an ice ax ready to fall into a crevasse at any moment. It’s really just an extended hike. It’s by no means easy… Read more

Kilimanjaro MMX

August 6, 2010
Kilimanjaro, Tanzania
It’s about time I gave y'all another post. To follow up on the last post, the next day they sent up another guide Godfrey. We didn’t quite realize this at first, but Godfrey was also an assistant guide. That gave us two assistants and no head guide. Both of them were very nice, although it was clear that neither one really had much experience being in charge. And between the two of them… Read more

A Mountain of Possibilities

July 29, 2010
Kilimanjaro, Tanzania
“It is a mountain of possibilities,” Benjamin told us. “Do not take the mountain the way you want to take the mountain… Read more

Good Memories from the Cave of the Forgotten

July 23, 2010
Caveau des Oubliettes, Paris, France
Apparently I love subterranean Paris. After my chthonian exploration of the Paris Catacombs yesterday, I figured the next logical step was to go a level up and check out the sewers. It’s not something I would normally seek out, but I had it on good authority (Jenny T) that it’s cool. Plus, Lara hadn’t done the tour yet. I can’t say the Égouts de Paris smelled pleasant… Read more

Florida/London/Paris Photos

July 22, 2010
Sorry for the delay in posts, I’ve been absurdly busy since getting back to Chicago. Here are photos from Florida, London, and Paris to tide you over. I promise some new posts this weekend. Florida London Paris

Kili Success!

July 12, 2010
Kilimanjaro, Tanzania
I successfully survived the climb to Uhuru Peak, the highest point in Africa, rising 5,893 meters (19,334 feet) above sea level. As the internet is kind of dodgy here in Africa, photos and stories must wait until I return to the states, but know that I have returned from the adventure! Now after my first shower and first time on the internet in 8 days… Read more