Monkeys on the Mountain

I climbed it!  I climbed it!  One day, I decided to leave my job working as an  employee for a company that offers the best lawn care services Birmingham, AL has to offer and head to Africa to climb the famous Mount Kilimanjaro.  I could hardly believe my good fortune when my supervisor agreed to hold my job for me until I returned from my adventure.  Within a two-week timeframe, I was saddled with all of my hiking and camping gear and heading up the tallest peak in Africa.  I was going to have an exhilarating adventure!

I hired a guide to take my friends and me to the summit of Mount Kilimanjaro.  We scheduled a seven-day trip with our guide who turned out to be the funniest, most organized, and smartest guide we could have ever found.  Before we arrived to meet him, he provided us with the most detailed list of everything we would need to have an unforgettable, safe ascend to the top of Mount Kilimanjaro.  On the list were things such as; towels, sunscreen, toilet paper, maps, pertinent clothes, and a sleeping bag.  Since we had this information, packing was simple and I had more time to spend on tidying up and taking care of things before I left my home.

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An Unexpected Guest

My first night on Appalachian Trail was unforgettable.   I was exhausted as I set up my tent on the slight slope under a canopy of tall pine trees.  The temperatures were falling quickly and the sky was becoming ominous as a storm approached.  I was quick to settle my tent; just in time before raindrops the size of my cracked thumb began to fall.  Exhaustedly, I collapsed on my sleeping bag. 

I must have fallen asleep, because the last thing I remember was the sound of the rain, the boom of thunder and lightning streaks that danced across the sky.  Now it was all quiet.  All I could hear were the drips of water as they fell from the tall branches above my safe haven. 

At least I thought I was safe.  The following noise sounded more ominous than the powerful storm from earlier.  It sounded like the heavy footsteps of a big animal.  Perhaps it was a bear or a wolf?  Branches and leaves crackled under the pressure of the animal’s feet with each step.  It sounded as if, whatever it was, was milling around just outside the flimsy walls of my tent.  My heart was racing as my mind was filled with thoughts that my first night on the Appalachian Trail was going to be my last. 

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