8.02.2010 | 0 Comments

Given that I’ve been fairly stressed out of late, Chris made the wonderful suggestion of using this day off (Happy BC Day!) to do absolutely nothing.

So far, I’ve gotten so engrossed in this nothing, that I almost forgot to blog. I jumped out of bed, scattering the newspaper crossword pages all over the floor, and ran to my laptop to write a short entry.

But now that I’m up, I think I’ll make another pot of coffee.

And while I’m up, I think I’ll ignore the laundry.

And I’m definitely not doing anything Africa-related.

So this blog is going to be the most activity I do all day.

Aaaaaaaaaaand…. I’m done.

Happy Nothing Day, everyone!



8.01.2010 | 0 Comments

11 more sleeps.

It’s funny, as my departure day edges closer and closer, I am beginning to do those things that I have been saying, “I’ll do it closer to the date…”  to for the last 7 months. I mean, I’ve got all the big stuff done (flights, insurance, inoculations, traveler’s cheques, Tanzanian Visa…), but its those little things (figure out medication timing, what’s the time change like, what am I wearing on the plane?…)  that are being checked off the list at an alarming rate.

11 more sleeps.

This feels like something I can’t quite get a grasp on, and something over which I have very little control. Like the proverbial snowball that’s completely moving at its own rate, by its own volition, with nothing that I have in my power to stop it, or slow it, or make it disappear. The only real control I have at this point is the option to cancel.

And that’s not an option at all.

I wish the time would go by faster, so that I didn’t have to wait for the time to come.

11 more sleeps.



7.28.2010 | 0 Comments

I leave in two weeks.

That can’t be right…

*looks at calendar*

*counts on fingers*

*counts again*

Yep. It’s right.




7.27.2010 | 1 Comment

Yesterday’s Kili-related adventure was all about packing. Well, actually it was about stuffing, cramming, opting, and hoping. I broke a nail, accidentally punched myself in the face, cut my finger opening a headlamp, and dropped a hiking boot on my toe.

All in all, I’d say it went about as well as I had planned.


I had to get all of this:

Into one big blue backpack, and one small yellow carry-on.

The first thing I did was find myself a toy, and then spent the next 20 minutes playing with it…

One Hat

Two Hat

Not a Hat

Pensive Hat

This thing is so cool! I can make like a bazgillion* different types of head coverings. I think I’m going to be wearing this thing a lot. Chris figures that even though it’s white right now, it’s going to come back looking a little worse for wear, and possibly have it’s own fungi penal colony going on. Whatever. I think it’s cool!

Aaaaaaaaaaaanyway… I did my best to sort through my piles of STUFF, and Chris was very helpful when it came to my deciding what to bring and what to leave at home. Without him, I would have packed far too many clothes, way too many unnecessary supplies,  and one too many of my dogs. Thanks Chris!

So, after an hour or so, this is what was happening:

Leading me to finally complete the packing of my big blue backpack:

And my small yellow carry-on:

Now, most of that stuff is all in compression sacks that haven’t been compressed yet, so I actually have a decent amount of room. That means that I can bring back souvenirs for the people I love!  For my mom, for my dad, for my brothers, for my man… and of course something for me!  This is going to be great!

I sure hope I don’t forget anything.

Actually, that’s not true. With any luck, I’ll totally forget to pack my Therma Rest. That thing freakin’ SUCKS.

And so… that’s one less pre-adventure adventure. Today I venture to… THE BANK. (Insert ominous music here). Yes, I need to get some US traveler’s cheques for the trip, and a few Euros to tide me over for my extendo-stay at Schiphol Airport in Amsterdam (6-hour layover on the way there, 10-hour layover on the way back – I’m going to need to buy a lot of booze for that).

Until tomorrow, my happy readers!   xo

*Bazgillion may or may not be a real number


22 days.

7.21.2010 | 0 Comments

See that there? ^  Yeah, up there.  It says 22 days.

22 days.

I leave in 22 days.

I am finding that as the time comes closer to my leaving, I am often left without much to say. I guess I’m overwhelmed, but as I sit here each morning and think about what I’d like to say, I draw a blank.

There is still so much to do, and I feel as though I’ll never get it all done in time. There is still so much to worry about, and I fear that I’ll never get it all done in time.

So today, I am going to busy myself with a non-Africa project, and just let myself (and my poor, haggard brain) take it easy.

Tomorrow I’ll go back to driving myself crazy and recording it for your entertainment posterity.



7.20.2010 | 1 Comment

Check out this email I received the other day!!

Dear Robyn,

You have been nominated for the Volunteer of the Year Award for the Hats off Gala held in November. The Gala and awards are handled by the Delta Chamber of Commerce, located off of 60th ave, out by the Town and Country Inn. This Award is given out annually and it also one of five different catigories, such as Business of the Year Award and the Employee Extraordinaire Award. Usually, someone locally will recognize a community member who they feels deserves to be nominated. From there the committee members meet with the nominee and dicuss what they have been nominated for. From there the list is shortened to three nominees, the winner of which will be announced in the fall at the Hats Off Gala.

And so the board members for the Gala would like to meet with you and discuss what you are doing, and a bit of your background. If you please email or call us at 604 946 4232 and discuss your nomination, and your contact information (i.e. phone number, email address) that would be much appreciated.

Robert Bracken
Delta Chamber of Commerce

I am humbled.


Hi Jane!

7.19.2010 | 5 Comments

A recap of my life for those who may be new to the blog:

In between my charity work with the poor, and my 24-hour, on-call, volunteer position with the Saving-Kittens-From-Burning-Buildings Society, I am climbing Mt. Kilimanjaro to raise money and awareness for The Delta Hospice Society.

Although it’s certainly filling up my schedule with planning and preparation, I still have time each week to teach underprivileged children how to ride bikes, and I’m also able to fit in my bi-weekly visit to the farm where they rescue and rehab racing greyhounds. I am also quite content with keeping my position as President of the Board for the Real Men Don’t Eat Sea Urchins Society.

I am certainly able to continue with my PhD thesis on Caring for the Caregiver, but unfortunately I’ve had to cut down my daily trips to the SPCA to walk the dogs and clean the cat cages. Alas, I can only do that 3x a week now. It breaks my heart, but sometimes life gets in the way of life, doesn’t it?

However full my life may become with all my work to better the lives of others, I will always happily make time to speak with my wonderful, loving mother everyday, and also to lavish attention and an appropriate amount of chaste affection on my significant other (who was obviously raised very, very well).

So to those of you who may be just tuning in to this humble blog, I welcome you, and would like to take this opportunity to let you know that I am a very good person who respects others.

Especially mothers.

Of sons.



Stuff. Stuff. Stuff.

7.18.2010 | 0 Comments

As the days to go become less, (23 days until I hop on that plane!), the pile of STUFF that I have just keeps on growing. I’m trying to keep it all organized, but it’s like a hideous Gear Virus that is spreading mercilessly throughout the house. Bags of stuff from Valhalla Pure, bags of stuff from London Drugs, bags of stuff from Pharmasave, bags of stuff from MEC… I think I need a bigger bag in which to stuff all the stuff from these bags.

I have to pack clothes for beach, desert, rainforest, alpine, snow, and veldt.

I am couch surfing, camping, staying in beach huts, collapsing in hotels, and possibly staying in lodges.

I need hiking boots and flip flops, gaiters, long underwear, fleece, down, bikinis, sarongs, hats, socks, snow pants, a rain shell, shirts, pants, sunglasses, a headlamp, a good pair of gloves, and capris.

I need a sleeping bag, Therma-Rest, hiking poles, my water bladder, toilet paper, baby wipes, and medication.

And how about the iPod, camera, handycam, batteries, memory cards, chargers, and cords? Can’t forget those.

I need snacks. Lots and lots of snacks.

I need money. Lots and lots of money.

I need help. Lots and lots of help.

*puts head in hands*




7.17.2010 | 0 Comments

The Year of Adventure continues!


Tire changing

Handsome new beau



and next weekend… THIS.

Oh, Year of Adventure, how I love thee.


Back in Black

7.16.2010 | 0 Comments

I don’t know what I did, but it’s been done and I don’t like it.

As of this moment, my back is giving me the spinal equivalent of The Bird.

Stupid spine.


*Hobbles away mumbling about Advil, Kilimanjaro and needing a new bionic spine*