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FRIDAY, 7/14/06: Leave apartment at 4:25, figuring PAUL can answer the phone, and we're late as it is. Car COMES at 4:40, having had trouble with traffic to the Holland Tunnel blocking the downtown crossstreets. Traffic slow to the airport, too, getting there at 5:25! Through security 5:46, hoping for a seat-change. To British Airways service at 5:50, on sandwich line at 5:56. Pee and seated at 6:56, 6 hour flight, but half an hour wait to take off. Start taxiing at 7:02. 7:59: "We've been taxiing for about an hour, but the record in NYC is 2:38." Off at 8:05. I have my sandwich and my crossword puzzles, and Ken falls in the aisle at 11:30 having had too much to drink and too many sleeping pills.

SATURDAY, 7/15/06: Work the puzzle on the TV screen to 1PM and Gate number is messed up. Pee at 6:40, with British MUSIC before landing at 7:14AM. Long taxi to 7:28 and long exit to 7:35. Start on passport line 7:50. Out 8:15. Meet Anne and drive to Jury's Inn to meet Tess at 8:45. To breakfast at 9:10, Ken saying we should split the cost of HIS roll and coffee because it's OUR breakfast where I finish my sandwich with a free glass of water. To coffee shop 9:16. To station 9:36, and to Victoria and Albert Museum at 10:30 after a long underground walk. Into Modernism for 7P each, P=Pounds. In at 10:35 and it's huge and dull to 11:10, then to religious metalwork to 11:17, exhausted. Then silver, engravings, Turner, braille books at 11:47. Leave Victoria and Albert at 11:51, since I'm hungry and Ken agrees we're probably not at a second sitting at the Capitol. To Capitol at 12:08, first, though they SAY they open at noon, and we have a good octopus and flavors amuse-bouche, then my marinated salmon with deep-fried soft-shelled crab isn't very good, and Ken's Jersey Royal turns out to be special "in season" potatoes grown on the isle (and only) of Jersey, with leeks and asparagus and a wonderful cream sauce that he lets ME finish. His Bream en Papillote isn't very good, and he doesn't care much for the dark meat, and my lamb butt is plain with mushy overcooked vegetables. Interesting neighbors getting louder through the dinner, service very good, he LOVED his Levin white wine, having 3 glasses at 6P each, while I had one of those and an awful New Zealand Pinot Noir from 2003 for 8.5P, to be divided later. My isle flotant with guanaja (some chocolate) foam isn't the greatest, either, but he likes his mason jar with rice on the bottom and cream and jellies on top. 97 pounds and we're walking back through the very posh neighborhood (past Harrod's) to the station that takes us back to the hotel in the afternoon's sunny heat from 2:05, onto train 2:14 (after he wanted us to continue in the wrong direction, to Cockfosters, before I urged him off THAT train) and off 2:52, to room 235 at 3:02. Try to oust thing between teeth, fill pillboxes, and shit to 3:34, Ken snoring like mad. Pack, phone rings at 4:45 (twice) and I've left my collection of crossword puzzles under my jammed seat on BA flight 174!! Damn!! Wash face and keep two bags as carryons and go down at 5PM to 12-13 others waiting. Convince Ken it's 2 hours time difference to Nairobi, he gives me my Kenya window-seat number. We wait and chat to 4:07, as I write this. 28 people HERE, board bus 4:15. Bus goes at 4:22. To airport at 4:30, NO window-seats. Get over to Kenya to change RETURN seat at 4:40 and get it, 27J, at 4:55. THEN go on long BA service-desk line to change THAT return. At 4:58 no hope, what a MESS! Add a SECOND service person at 5:03. Leave at 5:20, she can't do anything. To security at 5:22, through at 5:27. People-watch and Ken shops to 6:05. I buy sudoku book for 5P and change OLD 5P at Travelex for NEW 5P. Read Tribune while Ken buys water to 6:23 and we go to gate 9, I do the Trib puzzle, start boarding 7:05. They open a toilet so I can shit, then can store NOTHING in front of the DOOR! Back to puzzle 7:27. Back out at 8:04, done with puzzle. 8 hour flight. Off at 8:30. Roll 1: #1 south of England 8:40, just at sunset. Dark below at 9:15, saw really nothing. At 9:20 lightning starts, and I see city lights! Then NOTHING of Alps. White wine and ice and all pills and melitonin at 9:30. Pee and I want to SLEEP at 10:36, but no FOOD yet! Take dinner:red wine AND Ambien at 10:43. Try to SLEEP at 10:56 which is 12:56!

SUNDAY, 7/16/06: Wake at 2:28, 3.5 hours sleep somewhat a relief, and look out: it's dark. Doze and get tapped on knee for breakfast at 2:49. Eat minute rolls, have second cup of 2-sugar and nice milk tea. Pee and wash face by 3:15, feeling almost good. Change watch to 5:16, still dark out. Looks cloudy; everyone's up. 5:50 eternally wish for DAYLIGHT flights. Bring bag down, 30 minutes to go, camera ready, not at equator yet. 5:56 they take blankets away, so I have to put on shoes. 5:58 first town lights and wing silhouette against lighter gray sky. 22 minutes to destination, translated as "safari." Cross equator about 6:05. Clusters of LINES of light, like luminous golden crocodiles. 6:11: Cloudy high and low. 10 minutes to land, lowering slowly. VERY cloudy as we land at 6:24, pre-dawn, foggy, at Jomo Kenyatta International Airport. Stop rolling at 6:22. Off plane at 6:42, fill out form, and onto passport line at 6:50. They take PREVIOUS flight's bags off carousel at 7:07. Get my bag at 7:17, and then Ken gets his, and to group in lobby at 7:22. Into 5-people van 7:30, having gotten 2000S with HSBC. Off 7:42-8:02, to Norfolk Hotel. Ken registers at 8:06, 3 "freshies": 2 high school students, 1 college junior! Orintation: 4 busses, 7 in each (how?). LEAVE stuff HERE, which is great, and I pile up about 10 pounds of stuff in my square black bag. Water will be provided, ice will be OK. 13 on Tanzania extension. Detailed orientation to 9:02, tipping of 10% INCLUDED, more just 100-200S. Driver, at end, gets $8-10/day/driver (though brochure says $4-6/day, which everyone is happy to follow). I charge Visa for our balloon trip for $770 ($385 each). To room 421 at 9:10, unpack and leave LOTS of stuff to be left in my square bag. #2 from room at 10:26, #3 hummingbird 10:34. #4-5 Norfolk Hotel facade into sunlight at 11:05. GREAT bloody marys (2) for Ken for 7P and my crabapple martini is sweet and lovely. Back to room at 11:23, thinking to lie down, but I don't want to sleep, so I start typing at 11:15 while Ken moves around, unpacks, makes various unpleasant noises due to his newly-acquired cold, not to mention his sucking sinuses, and I catch up at 12:21, having gone to find that the Lord Delamere isn't open this lunch, so we'll eat on the porch without reservations. Eyes closing as I finish this, Ken snuffling up huge quantities of phlegm. Exotic birds (blackbirds?) caw outside our window. Oh, #4 was a rickshaw as decor and a tree in the back yard. Now at 12:24 we're going to lunch, and he can only think about finding an Internet office to try to change our return British Airways seats. He has a ham pizza which crust he doesn't care for, and a "local" salad that he changes to a side salad for a nicely lowered price, but which still contains dynamite-hot local peppers. My fish and chips starts out too "fall apart, yet tough," but as I eat, it becomes better. Bottled sparkling water costs about a dollar. I though he outpriced me, but when he started quoting prices (not necessarily accurately) it seemed more even and I just let it go. Back about 1;48, try to do puzzle just to stay awake, but though I enjoy sitting on the tiny ground-level balcony, my feet propped up on the table, seeing all the hired help and many of the guests pass, serenaded with multiple bird-calls and a tiny bird that flew right past my feet to get under the bush right in front of me, my eyes kept closing, and finally I thought I couldn't POSSIBLY feel worse if I DID take a nap and regretted it for how it caused me to feel, I just HAD to take a nap, so I got into bed, next to Ken as he adjusted HIS napping position. I asked if he left a wakeup call, and he insisted "Oh, I couldn't possibly sleep that long," so I just put the responsibility on his head and lay down. At one point I was so chilly that I pulled up the quilt. But I sure did sleep, and I sure did dream, though what they were I don't recall, except with a feeling of relief that I was so "caught up with sleep" that I could "afford" to dream, though it may very well be the other way around, "dreaming was necessary in order to be caught up with sleep." Ken, of course, clarifies that you ONLY dream in REM sleep, which is the deepest and most necessary sleep. Wake at 5:34, lying a bit to not shock my body by getting up too quickly, but DO get up to feel quite fine, NO adverse consequences of the nap, which is unusual (though it was unusual in its length, just over three hours, coincidentally about the same as my sleep on the second night-flight), and then Ken and I chat about a lot of things (many dealing with the many cost-efficient changes from over-luxury hotels to hotels that now have no electricity between midnight and 5AM) in the trip, to the point of my thinking that Go Ahead may be engaged in a subtle form of bait-and-switch. Make sure I haven't consigned my Vicks to the "leave at this hotel" category, that I'll take along the bug-spray for the overnight, and pee and Vicks my nose and catch up with this by 6:02, knowing that we just have to be ready for the bus to the resturant at 6:30. As I'm typing, a knock at the door brings a waiter with a bottle of Cape Malan red wine, courtesy of the management, which Ken at first thinks to refuse, but I persuade him to allow it to stay, and when I finish typing I persuade him to let me open it so we can share a glass BEFORE we leave for dinner. He at first wondered if it were a twist-off cap, but I point to the corkscrew which I had made sure was part of the added apparatus of the donation, and when I pick up the corkscrew there's an unfamiliar horse-shoe shaped implement at its base, which I immediately intuit removes the foil from the neck in preparation for the introduction of the corkscrew, and it performs its function beautifully, leaving the foil in a perfect shape to be used as a temporary cap between pours without having to struggle with the cork. The wine's not bad, though Ken described it as cheap, and I take a second glass when he takes a second antihistamine for his ferociously running nose. Also ferociously running are the many kids with which we're surrounded, both in the hallway and through the half-open louvres in our balcony window, screaming as they play outside. Come back to type out all this by 6:16, Ken warning me it was getting close to the time when we meet at 6:30 for the bus, and Ken pooh-poohs the idea that wine may ALSO be provided with dinner, and I merely conclude, "Well, I hope to be pleasantly surprised." Got to get ready now at 6:20PM. Wine has us gathering charmingly in lobby at 6:30, into 2 busses for 7 and 20, leave at 6:34. #6 braai at Carnivore at 6:52. HUGE place with tables which may be for as many as 50, QUICK service, but things like soup and wines and special honey-dipped drinks are all extra. But I get the bill from Ken for 5986S, which was 3630 for our Shiraz, mediocre, but they DID take back the .5 liter of local red which was TRULY terrible, and then two soups for 800, a sparkling water for 280, and Ken got 300 for Karen and Jay's flat water which was charged 260. From the subtotal of 4970, a VAT of 16%, a Training Levy of 2%, and a Surcharge of 10% brings the total to 5986, or roughly $90, but what's money for. We get sat at a table for 6 AFTER the Kuklas were separated from us with the table before, and I remarked to Ken, "The Gods seem to have taken charge, though lately I haven't been impressed with the joviality of the Kuklas, but Karen and Jay seem OK. There are TWO singles, a rather cute guy whom I hadn't seen before, and another woman, so there shouldn't be trouble making us seven in cars. We started with soup, not bad after I added a lot of butter, and had ONLY a slice of Ken's tomato of the salad, and then the Churrascaria meats began to arrive: ribs, chicken wings (the mouth-watering not as good as the honey-dipped), ostrich after the ostrich meatballs, lamb, chicken (which Ken said was dry but I didn't think was bad), camel uniformly tough, pork good, about a dozen sauces only three or four we got right, and our wine was not the greatest, and I finished Ken's, but the table was cheery except for the other couple (Norbert and Shirley), of whom neither Ken nor I remember anything, except HE used to work with the FAA, starting with a Univac. Jay asked about my freelance indexing business, which was nice, but he's a real estate agent. More meats, some good, some bad, more butter, more hot towels, desserts of which I had a taste of three: brandy snaps are creamy, pineapple pie is no big deal, and I didn't mind the cheesecake but everyone else did. Lots of smoke, lots of people, good service, Benito around to make sure everything was OK, and we leave at 9:02, seven having left before us, and back to hotel at 9:20, pointing out the Inter-Continental we stop at when we come back, but Ken's dead asleep in the single seat behind me. Back to hotel at 9:20, type 9:26-9:45, almost finishing the hotel-complimentary wine, happy to be caught up to date, tomorrow wake-up call at 6:30, bags out 7:30, LEAVE bag at 8:15, depart at 8:30 for Abadare, after which we leave for the Ark. Was VERY happy on the bus back from Carnivore. This could be a GREAT trip! Stop typing, plotzed, at 9:46, so I MAY get over 8 hour's sleep tonight! Kids absolutely SHOUTING in the hallway! To bed, TOTALLY plotzed, at 9:54PM. Sleep VERY quickly, but wake at 11:55 to pee and try to remember phantasmagorical dreams.

MONDAY, 7/17/06: 12:01AM: Peed and typed SOMETHING on dream pages to start, and MUST put Vicks up my dry and now gently bleeding nose. Type this just to be able to type this, and look for my aspirin for tomorrow's I-hope-not hangover. Also take WHOLE 3-gram melitonin and decreasing free-pure water provided by hotel. Back to bed at 12:06AM. Some trouble getting back to sleep, looking at watch at 2 something and 3 something: sometimes feeling happy and pleased, sometimes anxious. Up at 5:35 to pee and record a dream fragment. Still a bit hung over and decide to take two more aspirin. Not really sleep, bring up blanket to be warmer, think, then phone rings at 6:30 and Ken goes in to brush teeth and shave, and I get hotel's bathrobe and type this. Sure was happy I had water in my own bottle for the second pair of aspirin, since the pint-bottle of free water in the bathroom was going fast. Decide to change underwear and shirt today, since our night at the Ark tonight will be with minimal luggage. Prepare for shower at 6:40AM. Finish wonderful old-fashioned shower (long time for hot water to get hot, quiz about which way to turn for hot) and out at 7AM to hear Ken say "It's raining." Take umbrella out of "stay in Nairobi" bag, after taking out long-sleeved shirt BEFORE that, locking that bag with my only lock, leaving my "big" bag unlocked, hopefully safely. Rush about packing my overnight bag, keeping out deodorant and toothbrush and toothpaste for after breakfast, getting my bag out at 7:18, Ken having already gone to breakfast, rather than sitting around watching me fuss. Type this at 7:20, ready for breakfast. Big eggless breakfast, Ken concerned that NO one wanted to sit with us, and back to room to brush teeth and pee and add this to 8:01, ready for lobby. Melee in lobby, my check-out pass was for room 10. Paid $66.16 on Visa. #9 Nairobi River 8:50 on way out. Stop in Africana Curio Shop 10:38. #11 shop at 10:40. Through #21---STUFF! Through Thika, of flame-tree fame, and Nyeri. Sign off for the Ark. On truck 11:16. Hedex ads for headaches. To Abadare Country Club at 12:35. Lentil soup, fruit punch, Ken's Dawa, and buffet. Start eating 12:50, and end at 1:42. #22 Abadare 1:47. #26 antelope 1:59. On bus in FRONT seat 2:25. Off 2:38. #36 Ark at 3:24 from distance. 3:40 talk, 4PM tea, 5PM bird feeding, which caused great fuss when a squirrel invaded above and two sunis and other creatures roamed below; and 6:30 talk in lounge. Dinner 7:30. Breakfast at 7, leave 7:50. Roll 2: #1 elephant 4:52. HADIDA ibis pair. 4 bushbuck, 8 elephants, dozens of Cape buffalo, suni (smaller than dik dik). 6:52 HERD of elephants. Dinner 7:30, 3000S Reisling, not bad chicken, lamb is tough and lasagna Ken hates. Good $40 Riesling and over at 9:05. Outside to listen and look. Shit at 9:35 and bed CLOTHED (including towel) for future bells: 2 for rhino, 3 for leopard, 4 for unusual. Bed 9:47. sleep little, chilly at 6450 foot altitude.

TUESDAY, 7/18: Out on deck 12:10-1;05, see genet, white-tailed mongoose, elephants, buffalo, ONE hyena. Bed. Look at clock 2:10 and pee, breathing hard. Out at 3AM to top deck, which Ken didn't know about and couldn't find me on. Light about 6:30. Light breakfast 7-7:25. Video warthogs. Wash face, brush teeth, remove towel, pack, write to 7:45. #5-6 from Ark 7:51. #7-8 leaving Ark 7:55. On bus 8AM. #10 caravans at Abadare 8:45. 9:02AM: Almost impossible to keep up: with little sleep to date, it seems the altitude kept me from sleeping, and so I went to the top room from about 12:10-1:05, and the hordes of elephant and Cape buffalo were still there, though there were many adverse interactions between them, and I missed the fuck of the buffalo when they kept racing away, and a woman blurted out (for the female buffalo) "But I TOLD you I had a headache." Then two herds of almost identical elephants exchanged. #11-12 Abadare entrance at 9:19. Stop 10:15-11:00. #13 carvings 10:24. Leave after Coriolis talk (cross equator) and stop at weaving school 11:40. Quite pitiful. #14 weaving at 11:25. #15 scarf/carpet making 11:48. #16 product 11:52. ENDLESS sales to 12:15. #17 Nanyuki sidewalk market 12:20. #19 Mt. Kenya Safari Club entry 12:40. #20 lobby 12:46. #23 WOULD be Mt. Kenya 12:52. #24 "Equator" sign at 2:07. To Animal Orphanage 2:27. #31 zebroid (zebra and horse) 3:34. Roll 3: #7 suni at 4:10. Hundreds of animals, most tourists, intesting guides, including one stepped on by elephants. #8 Rhinos, leaving zoo at 4:12. Back 4:27. To #17 of Mt. Kenya PEAK to 5:20. Watch dance drinking bloody marys at 7PM, really starting at 7:20, video almost complete short program, dinner 7:37-9:30, finding I've LOST BAG OF 12 ROLLS OF FILM. Take Ambien 9:38, bed 9:53, chilly but sleep practically instantly.

WEDNESDAY, 7/19: 7:03AM: Pee at 4:10, quickly back to sleep. Call at 6:19 wakes me, Over 8 hours sleep and I feel GREAT except for films. Wash and shit to 6:33. Bag out 6:42, check that peak is NOT visible, check having everything AGAIN, hoping Yusef found film in CAR! Finish this to date, thinking it would never happen, at 7:05AM and go with bag to breakfast. Call Ark from desk to see if they found my film, and they say they'll call back: Yusef gives a possible elaborate transfer service with a bus back from the Ark to Abadare to Mt. Kenya to Lake Nakuru Lodge, but to finish off that hope he got a call in the morning that they did NOT find any film, and probably we can only get it in Nairobi. Drive via Nyahururu to Subukia, and at the coffee plantation they said one car was going in to town for an ATM, and I asked Marian if she would try to get me slide film, and it turned out Simon, the leader, "managed" to get four rolls of Super-expensive Kodak, with 36 slides, BUT with only 100ISO/ASI/whatever. And he charged 3600S, which translated into $51+, so I gave him $60 and told him to keep the change (and didn't think of him as the main Tour Guide, so I didn't tip him ANYTHING at the end, so that made up for it). So each roll was $15. Turns out the shop HERE has the SAME film for 750S, which at WORST would be $11. But I have the film, and I have the money, so what the fuck! Mt. Kenya is in view, but it's misty/foggy. #23 camels from moving car at 9:02. 10:20 Coriolis effect for real at equator, for which I spend $5 for a certificate. Shop to 10:52, #24 equator 10:46. 11:11 no slide film in Nyahururu. Tea factory at 12:01. Tea grows high, coffee low, but both here at 7000 feet. Coffee bean is a fruit, which you can eat when it's ripe. 6 times higher price for coffee (price established by cartel) than tea. NO animals eat the leaves. Past-ripe coffee is strongest, destined for Sudan and strongest Moroccan coffee. I eat four or five roasted beans, crunchy and delicious. #25 tea plantation 12:39, good harvest due to heavy rains. 6000 kilos/day from the 1000s, and more, of pickers and their families who work by weight. 80 supervisors live here, in the houses I video. #26 guide and coffee beans 1:02. Solonum incanum will be newest antacid. Eucalyptus is Vicks, only stronger. Ken bitches about how late we are. Ask Marian for film. Leave 1:22. #27 Lacet gate 2:01. 2:09: "Simon (who stopped in town for ATM) has the [entry] card." In (without card) at 2:23, and dash to lunch after arriving at hotel at 2:42, and seated at view table at 2:44. 2:51 cream of bay marrow GREAT. 3:23 Simon passes, we get room 36, I pay $60 for film, to room at 3:30, hassle over netting (though later it turns out not to be mosquito season) and luggage space and write this to 3:47. Pee and leave room 3:55, when Mr. Kukla's coming for me. Car goes with three dozen others at 4PM. #28 male impalas at 4:06. To Roll 4 of new film, see impala, secretary bird, hippo, 5 rhinos, hundreds of Cape buffalos, zebras, Thompson's gazelle, baboons, 1 leopard far in a tree with 15 vans, and 2 million flamingos too far to photo with shoes whitened with nitron, crowned cranes, and many other things. Walk the grounds when we get back, Ken checks that shop will be open to 9:30, and we get to many dead ends looking over huge grounds, then back to sunset, which he leaves for, and I photo and video to 6:15, then look for him to find key and shower to 7:20, getting ready to meet Ken at dinner when he comes back and I sit waiting for HIM. To video musicians at dinner-entrance, sit with two women who talk about how they liked the town, chicken soup for dinner with a carafe of wine for 1000 which is supposed to be four glasses each and I barely have three, which is what Ken said he had, and I leave at 8:19 to get back to take an Ambien and type this until 8:39, ready for bed for the 5:45 wakeup call, 6:30 bag out, 7:30 departure, with Yusef's warning about a possible Maasai village visit ("with all the photos you want") for $20 if there's time tomorrow. Top opened up for the trip, and there's much more to say but I want to brush teeth before Ken gets back. Do so, and realize to my horror that I left my BAG at the table, so I go BACK, NOT meeting Ken, but women said he took my bag, and get back to room to find Ken had been at the CASHIER's to pay the 2320 bill, which they had to scrounge to get. So I type this at 8:49, literally falling asleep and mistyping like hell, over a half-hour after taking Ambien! Bed at 9:55, Ken still fussing with lights on, but I'm under facemask and comfortable, so I lie for a bit and probably fall asleep about 9:05PM.

THURSDAY, 7/20/06: Wake at 3:10AM to pee, pleased that I've slept over 6 hours, and get back to sleep quite quickly. Have a dream, then am aware the lights are on and ask Ken what time it is. When he checks, it's only 5:35AM, apologizing since it appears he misread his watch. But my sleeping time is over 8 hours, so I ask for my laptop and he gives it to me, asking sarcastically "Would you like me to wash your dick, sir?" to which I reply, "No, but my dik-dik could use cleaning." Now at 5:40 I try to remember dream. As I start typing dream, at 5:41AM, someone knocks on the door, saying "Morning call," and Ken says "Yes, thank you." Finish the slight dream at 5:45, Ken already dressed, and I have to pee. 5:56AM: Shit and complain that it'll be nice to get to a place where the water from the flush, and not you yourself, cleans the last bit of shit from the back of the bowl, and later wish for a place where the soap will actually WASH OFF. Ken's writing postcards, making me feel guilty, but first I want to top up my pillcase with the rest of my pills in the separate bottle. Pill-filling takes til 6:12, and somehow I don't even have enough: the last set I take Monday on departure (not remembering yet we return on SUNDAY) will be the PM set, leaving my AM set to be taken after I get home. And for some reason I packed not nearly enough calcium. 6:23AM: Bag packed and out with the porter picking it out of my hand. Ken quotes someone as saying the Maasai can get pushy by dropping things they want you to buy in your lap, and I respond "Then I can exercise my misanthropy by standing up and letting it break and saying "Tough shitsky."" Now at 6:24 might as well pack this away, put on my jacket, and head toward breakfast. 7:05AM: Great cheese, onion, and green pepper omelet, with the usual three-cup pitcher of hot chocolate needing just a bit of sugar, and picked up a cold crepe that wasn't bad with chocolate sauce, and at the end the principal (Terry) and I ended up chatting about how his children have to be mature to travel at all, and "child" tours are too active, witness the young kid in our group who couldn't sleep last night: they need more liesure time. Ken finally exits the bathroom so I can wash my hands from breakfast and pee. 7:19AM luggage confusions. Leave 7:25! #11-12 yellow-fever acacias 7:53. Leave Lake Nakuru Park 8AM. SACRED ibis is black and white. #13 traffic, Nakuru 8:11. 9:30 pee break, hut for women, field for men. To 9:42. #14 Narok: Tire and fruit 11:07. Get gas to 11:13. Pee/curio stop at Olare Gift Shop (see later) 11:33-11:47, Maasai Mara Senaken gate 1:22. Fig Tree is 22km. Pee 1:27-1:28. Fig Tree Camp at 1:56, to lunch 2:03 after ANOTHER pee, cream of vegetable soup plus lots. Lunch to 2:45, LONG walk to T47 to 2:56. Then hear of hippo and walk to T25, back to T1 and lobby and shit at 3:30 and write file 4. 3:35PM: No use going back to T47, was at the OTHER end, having just come around from T1 having seen the hippo at T25 and thinking the river might be the same river, but it wasn't. And I can't read what I'm typing, so I'll proofread later. The ride from Nakuru was overlong (7:25-1:56, including 33 minutes of stops, is just under 5 hours for 197km, a "4.5 hour drive.") but first there were only a few Thompson's gazelles, which Ken missed, and then there were five or six zebra, and then incredibly there were giraffe in the distance (I THOUGHT it was too dark and solid for a tree to be moving, and it turned into a giraffe) and there were six or seven in the same spot, and then we looked up and one was RIGHT AT the road, much too big for any photograph, and it slowly moved away from us, though we were too late to stop. When we finally got into the entrance, there were hordes of topis, distinctively purplish near the head and two large horns, and many wildebeest in the distance, said to be gathering for the migration, part of the park which was blocked off must be where they're coming through. Then, to go back to now, 3:39, it started raining, so I was glad I brought my bag and my umbrella, but when I found myself back at the bridge, I decided just to stay right there and type, with others looking on with curiosity. IN the park were vultures in trees, a lilac-breasted roller flew near the car which Yusef identified to Ken's chagrin because of course he missed it again, and we go back to T47 our neighbors the nice couple (Jay and Karen) were next to us with a sl(HA, meaning SW)eeping view of the horizon above the river, where, as he said, the poop proved that animals walked along the river, and on the horizon was a topi behind which exited, I think, a vulture on the ground, and there were other zebras, gnus, and maybe even buffalo. Since it got all clouded I have no idea which direction we're facing. Someone comes past and wonders if we'll be going on tour, and I say I'm sure we will, and she's in T42, not far from us, and the principal passes and gives me a quizzing look, saying that this is probably more legible than his handwriting, and all the staff is lined up against the far wall looking at me, as is a group of French-speaking women on a sofa to my right. Just too much to thimk of, such a distinctly different place, and I keep trying to tell Ken the difference between the hills and valleys here and the essentially flat Serengeti, and then we GET to the flat, and it IS like it. Who knows how old Fig Tree Camp is, but Lake Nakuru Lodge had obviously a SHELL of new places added to the outside, in a different style, and the Netherlandish couple, who told us about the hippo, comes past on their way out (but only for a game drive, not leaving), as they said. I sit in the large-roofed lounge, and no one even has the nerve to ask if I want a drink or not. Much younger crowd here, at least those who pass by, and international too, since I think I've heard Italian, particularly from the obnoxious family with kids of whom one was smoking in the other room when we had the poor lunch of overdone lamb chops, tough pork in cream sauce, lyonnaise potatoes which weren't bad, and desserts up the whazoo, easily the best part of any meal, with the peach mousse with strawberry sauce, the nutted roast pear from before, and now at 3:48 I'm wondering if I'll be able to see the people passing by on the way to the parking lot for the tour. Have my spare film, but WILL have to take the film out of the video to see how much I have left, because I sure don't want to be caught short tomorrow on the balloon, which may even take off NEAR where we are. Decide to stop, since the Balloon desk is nearby, and ask if the windsock outside tent T48 IS the field from which the balloons ascend, I'll just walk from the room, thank you. Ken had a Tusker beer and I had a Sprite for lunch, increasing our bill-differential which he keeps insisting is the same for both. Rain's let up a bit, and I hope I don't get a chill by riding in the car without a jacket. Out to truck at 4:03. #19 three topi 4:20. MUCH to see: three cheetahs lying on a mound surrounded by 15-20 vans, much to incorporate with my video & photos. Back 6:25, drinks at 6:30, white-faced vultures, bat-eared fox, take Ambien at 8:56. Ken INSISTS on setting his alarm for 5:20. Bed at 9:18.

FRIDAY, 7/21/06: Pee at 2:20AM. 5:05AM. Woke at 2:45AM to pee and had some trouble getting back to sleep, and again at 4:53, when I felt I would never get back to sleep, but I didn't have to: had a cough, took two Fisherman's Friends, and decided to take out earplugs. Heard Ken snoring and someone nearby snoring as well, and then footsteps coming closer and cloer and then the voice outside" "Wake up call," and Ken responded, and asked what time it was, and he said "5:03" and I wearily summarized "So we have to be there at 6AM, were supposed to have a 5:30 wakeup call, you wanted a 5:15 and then a 5:20 call, and now it's 5:04?" He said he thought he might sleep a few minutes, then said "Fuck, might as well get up," and started coughing and shaving and yawning, and I finish this at 5:10, deciding to get up also and get to the desk for more hot chocolate and little cakes, or whatever they'll have to stave off our hunger for the champagne breakfast about 10AM. Got up and washed my face and put on my shorts and socks and shit a bit after wiping up the pee from the floor (without a word, that I'm sure Ken would have denied) and he's coughing and clearing his throat, and I take a second pair of Friends and put on clean shirt and pants and jacket and unzip to go outside to see stars and feel that it's not THAT cold that I feel obliged to put on TWO shirts, though I actually might put on yesterday's smelly shirt OUTSIDE my clean shirt. PUT on second shirt, wristwatch, shoes, and say to Ken "I'm ready when you are," and he responds "Four minutes," and I'm feeling comfortable and warm and rested, even stopped coughing with the second pair of Friends not yet dissolved, and lots of lights to put out before we leave as Ken goes back into the bathroom for something, and of coure it takes up 10 minutes for the trek to the lobby, timed last night with a guide helping me across the plain where I had NO idea which direction to go, but when he put me on the right path I said I knew where to go, but the guy waiting at the T35 intersection insisted on leading me with a flashlight that he swept into the bushes---looking for animals?--I felt good he came along. Leave at 5:39. To lobby to drink two cups of hot chocolate and SWEAT inside jacket. Take it off at 6:03 for coolth. Leave 6:03, on truck 6:19. Tight fit of 16 people into four roller-coaster-like padded compartments, off at 6:30, see hundreds of thousands of dots below, including many giraffes that the other balloon ducks low to see, but when I ask Eileen (?) if we can go lower, I get a terse lecture about winds changing direction at different altitudes and if we go at the wrong height we'll end up at the wrong place and she knows what she's doing. Great photos and videos will show what we saw, and Ken bought the $28 DVD which has standard photos and our 21 shots from the basket. Land at 7:40, TRAVEL 20 miles, 10 miles from camp. 1000' highest, 30' lowest. Breakfast of omelets made to order, lots of champagne, two bloody marys, others have gin and tonic, table for us four, other grand table has false wedding and real honeymooners, great Maasai servers, one of which I hope I get a great picture of, good service, almost worth the $385. Onto truck 9:40, but their radios can't talk to OUR trucks, so we transfer to another truck at 10:23, seeing more animals as we go through the burnt area, but sadly back to Fig Tree Camp at 11:15 when Valerie and Larry have been waiting for us for two hours---we were to have been back at 9:30! THEY went on game drive 7:30-9:30 and saw three cheetahs. Into the car (Topi) at 11:25, waiting for those two and then they had to go to the JOHN. #33-34 three cheetahs 11:37! #35 lions at 11:55. To hippo pools on the Mara River to 2:02, guided by a "Park Ranger" with an Uzi and camouflage uniform who takes us downriver to see enormous crocodiles, but hippos only briefly surface and toss water around. We're LONG way away, raining, lousy roads and slow going, finally back at 3:24, lunch 3:28-3:50, wait to 4;03 for rain to slacken to take towels and walk back to T47 at 4:11, and back to hall at 4:24 for Ken to say he's not going, and we're out to see two stuck trucks, a huge van-press on a harrassed cheetah, and out at 4:34. Announce wakeup tomorrow at 5:45, bags out 6:15, leave at 7AM. We're back at 6:11, I have only tea to drink as we all sit around charcoal fire and talk, and eat SMALL dinner 7:30-8:35, to room at 8:45 and bed at 9PM without Ambien for the first time in three days. Dreams.

SATURDAY, 7/22/06: Wake at 5:02, Ken's alarm goes at 5:20. I dress and wash to 5:51. "5:30 call" comes at 5:52. Bag out at 6AM, guy waiting, clear sky. Leave at 6:04, to car at 7AM after my being first at omelets and having lots to eat because I know lunch will be late. Off at 7:07, Yusef telling us that Mara means Land of spotted (scattered) trees. #19 Maasai guide at 8:04. Pictures inside village to #35, talking to four brothers, 18-12, braids for adults, hair-length a matter of choice, father has 8 wives and thus 8 families, maybe 50 children. Out to meet another father, talk, avoid "Gift shop" but photo dances and old man and children and video inside hut. I leave first at 8:50. Cannabis hibiscus is fuzzy-podded bush from yesterday, per Yusef. 9:32 goodbye song. 108 people, 300 cattle. #37 goodbye dance at 9:15. Off 9:18. "Supa" is the Maasai "Jambo." Roll #7 (?) #1-2 goats at 10:11. Pee break 11:09-11:27 at Olare gift shop (second time). #3 downtown Narok, where Yusef desn't get his missed change when he came in, and I forget to record time we leave: 12:35 or earlier. LOUSY road. Pee stop 1:59-2:05. RAIN. Checkpoint stop 2:15-2:35. To Nairobi garage 3:10, lunch starts 3:30 with beer. Tamambo Restaurant in "The Mall." Soup, chicken, apple crumble with cinnamon ice cream with a Tusker and to car at 4:34. They say giraffe center closes at 5:30 sharp. Into traffic at 4:43, to place at 5:08, videos to 5:19, feeding three giraffe, leave at 5:29, to Blixen house 5:39, good tour, saying land was too high for coffee and the soil was too acid. Buy 2 books for $40 and leave 6:20 into terrible videoed traffic. We're told breakfast is at 7 and leave at 8. To room at 7, to find ONE bed. Move to 332 and settle in by 7:40, dinner 8-9:15, Ken insisting on what turns out to be mediocre Indian food with a screamig baby. He apologizes, saying he thought baby would be quiet: NO baby is EVER quiet!! Check bag to 7/29 from room, and type 9:16-10:12, catching up, ready for Ken's alarm at 6:20 tomorrow. Then remember I hadn't taken pills, and Larium is VERY bitter, so I take two sweets I took from regular dining room to try to get rid of the taste til 10:18 and bed at 10:22 and manage to get to sleep after a long time.

SUNDAY, 7/23/06: 3:48AM: Wake twice so far to type dreams, pee, and drink water, Ken's head encased in pillows: I must be snoring up a storm! Wake at 6:05 and can't read my watch, remembering another dream. Shit and use match and get out at 6:17 to find Ken checking his alarm, turning it off, and going into the bathroom at 6:18. Definitely want to shower in this luxury Inter-Continental hotel rather than in the "thatch-roofed huts" at Amboseli where the lights and water go off at midnight and on at 5AM, or something like that, but not quite sure where I am in the clean-underwear-and-socks cycle: probably SHOULD change but WON'T, amazed when Ken confesses that he learned from me that "you can wear clothes more than one day and get away with it, as you've been doing for years." A stork flies by, cawing, at 6:25, the sky just beginning to be blue outside, reminding me of my frustration driving back from Karen Blixen's house through the Nairobi traffic last night: there's so much to remember and so little time to transcribe it all: the hugh numbers of enormous storks (Yusef says the heaviest flying birds next to Corey bustards, I assume he means in Africa, since I thought the condor was heaviest) flying over traffic and building enormous nests in acacia trees almost denuded of leaves in the middle of traffic circles that get so overcrowded (and impossibly complex in the left-handed traffic, where one maneuver seems totally to go against traffic: where a driver has to cut across determined lanes to get to the turn he wants to make) that the only way it seems to work is to close off all entrances to the circle (there may be six or seven) but ONE, and let them circle to whatever exit of the six or seven they want, but that means that about 75% of the lanes are totally unused all the time because the turn-lanes and drive-lanes available to the other five or six streams of traffic are totally unoccupied, though it would take complex paper analysis to figure out exactly how efficient or ineffcient it is. Shower to 6:50, borrow more of Ken's antibiiotic for my healing chin-sore, and pack to put bag out at 6:55 to permanent hall-guard. Feel slightly short of breath and dizzy after showering and don't have much appetite: a bowl of fruit, a cup of hot chocolate, two glasses of orange juice, and two rolls with butter with the ham and cheese omelet was "all" I felt like having, aside from a slice of orange "Red Highland" cheese. Ken goes to the john and I feel I should TOO. He stays in the john until 7:35 and I tell him to check us out and I have a soft light-brown shit which I hope isn't the first step toward diarrhea, but complain to Ken that I hope I'm not feeling like Fred: not willing to go to ANY altitude because I can't take it. Down to lobby late according to the hotel clocks, 3 minutes faster than my watch (of which Rob now has none, having traded away all THREE Wal-Mart $5 watches for various far-more-valuable African trinkets). Darlene gives me back my Dinesen book, and I come down to hear Ken telling the Indian Restaurant finances story (that they allowed us 1500 shillings for our meal and we had to pay whatever was over) yet again. Go outside in the cool rain and take #10 at 7:43 of the "Times Tower" which appeared in an ad for some international company along with Big Ben, the Eiffel Tower, the Statue of Liberty, and other countries' symbols, so it's not only a symbol of Nairobi but a symbol of Africa. Look through the "China Supports Africa" magazine to no effect, but in looking through the TV Guide there's an ARRESTING photo of some ZZ (Zinadine Zidane) soccer player that I can't resist taking with me. Down to lobby to everyone chatting and I grab a chair at the Guest Relations desk and type to date at 7:54AM, luggage being loaded into trucks, and feeling somewhat better to simply be sitting down exerting no effort at anything but typing. #11 packing 7:52. Big bags LEFT, but we get a HUGE one that causes packing problems until we all get in at 8:08. Karibu is the name of Nairobi's slum, the largest in Africa. Hand Carvers Den 10:45-11:15. Gas 11:20-11:25. #12 Namanga 11:26. Flat tire (that makes two for the four cars) 12:10-12:22, because clearly Yusef has to coordinate. Then 6-8 giraffes at 12:25. #13 Amboseli gate (maybe) at 12:33. #14 weaver birds' nests 12:35. Go into park at 12:37. Exit park 1:17. To Amboseli Sopa Lodge after 19.5km at 1:35, grumbling that we'll have to do that 20-minute migration EIGHT times while we're here, rather than staying in Ol Tukai as originally scheduled. Sopa must have given them a good rate. Electricity is off midnight to 5AM, Hot water off 10:30-5:30AM. Dinner is 7:30-9:30, breakfast 6:30-8:30. We're to meet today at 3:45 for afternoon game drive. Check in at 1:45. To room 17 at 1:48. To lunch 1:55-2:40. SIGN says electricity is 5AM-9, 12-2, 6-12, but Ken tells me they made an exception on the middle range from 12-4 because of all the people checking in. Wash face at 2:55 and put on more of Ken's ointment and get out another roll of film and put stuff away and get out postcards to write (DID pack stamps away until next Nairobi!) by 3:15, when I lay down. Ken WAKES me at 3:40, car goes at 3:51. #21 van cluster at 5:58, before which we saw 40 elephants cross the road, three lions pursue gnus, and lots of dusty roads, taking pictures and videos but getting NOTHING like Rob gets with his digital. We're supposed to be out by 6PM, but actually get to exit at 6:10. Back at 6:35, taking 25 minutes on what HAD been 8 trips, reduced to SIX trips by Yusef's suggestion we take ONE LONG trip tomorrow from 7:30AM-1PM, which sounds like a great idea. We only see the BASE of Kilimanjaro, despite the hint that it might clear before sunset, but the clouds remain as we have two drinks to 7:35 with the Jontz's, dinner, smaller and smaller for me, unil 8:25, when I come back to 17 to find ONE bed turned down for TWO people, and brush my teeth THOROUGHLY to 9:05, Ken goes to bed immediately, saying he's set his alarm for 5:50 when the common wake-up knock (no phones) is 6AM for 6:30 breakfast and the 7:30 game drive. Finish this at 9:15, typing in the john while Ken goes to sleep, so I hope to get more than 8 hours sleep to help shake my feeling of "something going slightly wrong" healthwise. This time next week I'm HOME! Get into bed but remember I haven't put on the antibiotic, so I get out of bed with the flashlight, put on the antibiotic, put Vicks up my nose, and pee, getting back to bed at 9:27, still ready for more than 8 hours of sleep.

MONDAY, 7/24/06: 5:03AM: Sort back in file 8 to find that I woke at 12:30AM to pee and type and finish at 12:36AM. Get right back to sleep and wake again at 4:43AM, pee and type, and finish typing at 5:00:50. So I've taken 6+18+9=33 minutes for typing to 5:09AM when I've finished. Oh, and when I got up at 4:43, the windows were so bright I thought the moon must be out, but when I pull the curtain aside I find the porchlights on, so I turn on the over-sink light and type the second dreams in much greater ease than the first one, having had to hold the flashlight precariously under my chin to see the display as I typed. Finish for good now at 5:11AM. 6:03AM: Try Actualism to get to sleep, but at the start have the incredible idea of talking to the Principal, who I hope is coming to Tanzania, but if not I have to talk to him today or tomorrow, about SHARING trips, unless of course he doesn't like to share at all, or with me (but never do it). Lie and think nice thoughts until I see Ken getting up at 5:50, when he goes into the bathroom, and I get up and decide to see if we can share our knowledge and come up with 28 people's characteristics now at 6:05. 1) Ken, 2) me, 3&4) Rob and Darlene, 5&6) Larry and Valerie Jontz (to end our Topi van), 7&8) Duane and Joan (the old couple many times paired with us), 9&10) People next door at Fig Tree (Jay and Karen), 11&12) Couple to left of Darlene at Nairobi lunch: Richard and Linda, 13&14) Fat photographer and wife (surname Smith): Gene and Jessica, 15&16) Husband and wife: Hal and Sandy, 17&18) Justin, older; David, younger son, 19) Principal (Terry) coming with us to Tanzania, where I intend [oh yes, when I said I'd send a VHS to Darlene she was very pleased, but then I thought again and she said she'd prefer a DVD] to ask if he'd ever be interested in sharing a trip SIMPLY to reduce single-supplement charges, 20) single woman (Beverly), whom I'm VERY glad isn't coming to Tanzania (but she IS, Jessica isn't coming so there are THREE singles, not just one), 21&22) two single women: Marian the shorter, Joyce the taller (and more gregarious), 23&24) tall old man and woman who doesn't like me: Norbert and Shirley, 25&26) Construction worker and wife, Paul and Dee, 27&28) Rosa and James, oriental aunt and nephew. Out at 6:21 to cloud-shrouded Kilimanjaro. Video birdcalls in backyard to 6:34. #22 Amboseli Sopa sign 6:37. Breakfast 6:38-7:20, where James and Rosa named ALL the names. Car goes at 7:30. Into park 7:58. #23-24 Kilimanjaro! at 8:26. Both #25-26 elephants, baby maybe 6 weeks old at 8:42. Video pelicans 9:04. #30 sacred ibis 9:02. #31 saddlebill stork 9:11 after #32 baboons. Amboseli Lodge (where we would have stayed had they the room for us) 9:20-9:45, taking brochure. #33-34 hyenas at 10:07. #35 hippo 10:54. #37 fish eagle. Roll 8: #1 hill panorama 11:48, started climbing at 11:35. #2 car and dust on road 11:51. #3 dust devils 11:52. Down at 12:07. #5 Nootembo (or something like that) Hill that we'd climbed 12:21 with invisible Kilimanjaro behind it. #6 lion in the road 12:42. Gate 1PM, Sopa at 1:22, lunch 1:35, awful, to 2:19, type to 2:50, rest to 3:05, fuss with Ken filling out forms and wanting to know our Kenya-departure flight-number, which I thought was not REALLY what they wanted on our departure-to-Tanzania form tomorrow, and I momentarily lost my last used roll of SuperKodak 100 which drove me crazy until I found it at the bottom of my green bag, and numerous other ridiculous fusses. Leave at 3:50 for the walk-tour, #7 Amboseli Sopa Lodge entry-roof at 3:54 as we wait for the giant Maasai Tommy, who turns up about 4:15 and takes us off into the woods at a tortuous pace, finding five very distant zebra, taking #8 Tommy and Val at 5:33, already tired and feeling my shoes full of thorns and stones, and he wants to show us more until Ken starts walking back alone, which is of course forbidden, and then he makes fun of Ken for being afraid of the dark, which infuriates Ken, and I forgot the herd of impala bounding by which was, in fact, the hit of the walk. My right second toe is hurting more and more, and I even feel it's probably bleeding, and about #9 a flash photo of the beautiful bordering bougainvillea at 6:35, I sit down and take off my shoes to remove stones and thorns, but can't wait to get to the lobby and take off my shoe and sock and find a kidney-bean size flap of skin loose from just behind the tip of the nail to the back of the toe. Tommy comes up to see it and offers no apologies whatsoever. I limp to the room, Ken saying "Don't forget the meeting with Simon at 7PM," and take off my shoes and socks and hike up my pants and laboriously sit on the four-inch sill of the shower and wash off my calves (very dirty) and feet (dirtier still), as well as I can, pull off as much of the flap of skin as I can bear, knowing there's a strip with dirt still under it that I can't wash off with soap and the face towel and clean water from a botle, and slather on Ken's antibiotic and find a tiny bandage from my dop kit Quies box and put that around, wrapping it with toilet paper, and putting on a clean sock and slippers and limping back to the bar. I go inside to find Val and ask if she's a nurse, but she's not, saying Joan is a nurse and helped her with her sprained wrist, but then Larry suggests maybe the hotel has a nurse when he suggests hydrogen peroxide but says he has none with him. That's a good idea, so I go to the desk and they say they'll send for HIM at 7:11. I go back inside to finish my Tuskers (which Ken adds to the bill for me), and the supposed 7PM meeting with where Simon asks everyone to gather in one corner, television blaring in another corner, and starts at 7:22 to congratulate the group about having no injuries when someone comes to the side and asks "Who wanted the nurse?" There's some amused comment as I get up and go to him, tell him the problem, and he says he'll have the proper equipmnt in my room in five minutes, and I leave for room 17 to wait for him, typing some starting at 7:31. He shows up at 7:40, puts my foot in the sink, rinses painfully a number of times with hydrogen peroxide, cleans it with cotton again and again, puts on an antibiotic cream topped with a powder which he leaves with me, covers it with a larger bandage and then surgical tape, saying I should do the same for the next three nights and it should be OK. He then takes out Cipro, but I go to my bag and verify I have mine, so she says to take it, and when I ask him about charges he says something about the medicines being "in another department" and thinks a bit and says 1000 shlllings. I give him two US 5s and 250 shillings as equivalent and says he'll bring me two more bandages to add to the only two he had in his kit-box. I say I'll be in the dining room, clean things up a bit and start to go to dinner at 8PM when the guy comes in to turn down the beds and hint he'd like a tip. Sure. To dinner at 8:06, where Beverly monopolizes the monologue, and I find to my distress that she IS coming to Tanzania, the odd person being the photographer's wife, who is NOT coming, so there are THREE singles. Mediocre dinner (guilty about not recording evaluations after each hotel) and out at 8:57 to pay the bill on my Visa, many drinks, to bed at 9:25, realizing Ken has left a wakeup knock at 5:30 for our 7AM departure.

TUESDAY, 7/25/06: 6:01AM: Wake about 12:30, lay and think. Hard to sleep. Wake 3:32 and pee and drink, Up at 5:32 when Ken goes into the bathroom: I'd not heard his alarm at 5:30. Start typing about 5:33, but stop at 5:38 when I find a tick on my leg and show it to Ken, who doesn't know if it's a tick or not. Flush it down the toilet when I pee. Typing more to 5:48 when he reminds me that the bag has to be out at 6AM ("How can there be a wakeup call at 6 and bags out at 6?"). I start packing and put things, including umbrella, into big bag and things, including sunscreen and form-envelope, into the little bag. Then sit down to type as Ken wants to go to breakfast at 6:01, and I say I'll be at least a half an hour, or maybe 15 minutes, and he sits down to "maybe wait" and clears his throat INCESSANTLY, but I resist the impulse to ask him to PLEASE go to breakfast, and he does in fact leave at 6:04 as I blithely continue typing. Now at 6:06 I'll go finish the saga from last night. Do so by 6:21, messing up the order slightly, but I'm caught up and ready to put on shoes, shut off the lights, and take my bag up for departure, whenever---but got to shit first! Finish that at 6:25, put on shoes and pack this into bag at 6:28 and go up final time for breakfast. No line for omelets, most are finishing, Ken goes back for his bags, I have juice and hot chocolate and buttered-and-jellied bread only, and joined by the family that I complimented on their "functionality," describing myself as being from a dysfunctional family. Then they started quarreling. Then Terry, who had them in the four seats in the back of his car with Rosa and James as buffers, but the most extraordinary car-story came from Karen, who shared a car with EIGHT people, which meant that someone, and she implied it was mostly HER, had to sit in the MIDDLE of the last row of three seats! Back to my notes: #10 Kilimanjaro 6:32, breakfast, #11 Kilimanjaro 7:02. At 6:59: "Departure at 7:30!" I type and at 7:06 am called for INSTANT departure, since we're all ready. Leave 7:10. Boring ride across to Kimana gate at 7:32. To exit gate at 8:15, not seeing much, though I REALLY thought I saw a lion lying down when everyone was staring at the hyena further along the same line of sight. Beseiged by saleswomen. Namanga 9:06. #12&13 transfer bus at 9:26. Say goodbye to everyone, particularly Rob and Darlene. Bus goes 9:31. Through Kenya out-post 9:39. Bus goes 9:42. 9:44 "Clear customs for vehicle" to 9:45! Long no-man's land between with no photos permitted, to Tanzania entry 9:50, I'm back on bus 9:56. Bus goes 10:05 with three extra passengers in front and back. #14-15 border. Mt. Ngindo 10:06. SMOOTH PAVED ROAD! Roadkill: bushbaby, civet, hyena. He took 2.5 hours from Nairobi to the border. #16 Mt. Meru 10:57. Drop off 3 people in downtown unrecognizable million-people Arusha 11:50-11:55. To Mt. Meru Game Lodge 12:18. I report a "Comatose crocodle in a cage and a couple crowned cranes," and Jay and Karen continue the "C" game, even though they've promised the older couples to be with THEM in their car, and I can't muster the nerve to ask Terry, and Ken suggests I set up the car and I say HE's much better at that and he insists I AM much better than that, so it doesn't get done by US, though Karen PREDICTED it might fall out (as it does) that they might be "kicked off the island." #18 storks in Mt. Meru tree per Ken's demand 1:32 after good lunch outdoors under hairy-faced vervets. Bus to town to get repairing cars, leaving at 2:18. To Arusha 2:45. Leave in car 3PM after bus-transfer-sorting leaves Beverly and Gene in OTHER bus as 6, and Jay and Karen and Terry with us as SEVEN, which makes packing the back VERY hard and our aisle is LOADED with stuff, and only the FRONT rider can see much above, those in back have VERY limited views unless the top is up. #20 Arusha photo-try at 3:11. #23 curio shop 3:51. #25 three mountain ranges, #26 four mountain ranges, #28 Lake Manyara 5PM. #29 Rift Valley 5:03. #30 Karatu 5:30. Arrive at Ngorongoro Farm House 5:45. 5:52: timing tomorrow: lunch: picnic in crater, breakfast 7AM, leave 8AM. Dinner 7:30. Undress to 6:11. Shower to 6:42, rinsing at last with pure water and putting on both antibiotics and bandage and old plaster-tape. Get to patio for Paul to play zeze for us, from Ethiopia, an Iraqw (pronounced Iraqi). To dinner, not bad at all, back 8:40 get waterproof tape from Val, look at GREAT stars on lawn, including lightning flashes dimly from the west, Ken INSISTS on bed at 9:09, wakeup call for 6:45AM. Does he really NEED 9 hours and 36 minutes of sleep? Fuss typing and putting porch light off and bed at 9:25, adding note to ADD CIPRO.

WEDNESDAY, 7/26/06: Wake at 12:30AM, 3:19 and 5:12, hard to sleep, getting facemask against bright light over partition from bathroom, dream which I later transcribe to file 8. Note to CHARGE battery, but can't: it lights up at first, then goes out. Bags out 7AM, I type 7:11-7:25, up to breakfast. #31 farmhouse 7:33. Breakfast fast, no hot chocolate, and pay $35 bill that changes to $37 which I pay with Visa, still being left with only $102, which disgusts Ken that evening  when I count it up and tell him. Pay at 7:49, soft shit in women's room at 7:57, surprising Karen when I exit, and down to loading truck, with doors on TWO sides, except original door opens too far, hitting the FRONT door, and he says at the end not to use it. We have Nyati, buffalo. Ken in front, Jay and Karen in front row. Leave 8:12. #32 relief 8:31. #33 history 8:37. Talk to pretty blonde from Netherlands 3-week bush?(T?)akers tour, leave 8:56. #36 baboon 8:07. #37 baboon 9:03. Roll 9(?) #1 Ngorongoro Wildlife Lodge and memorial 9:31. Start down into the crater (which Issa explains is really a caldera, so he CAN be helpful, but Jay is REALLY against him, maybe only as an excuse to give him no tip at all. Ken doesn't think he's so bad either) at 9:48. #2 Maasai village and depression at SIDE of Ngorongoro with Mangrove Mountain in background. #3 of former at 9:55. #4 start of descent road 10:01. and #5-6 of crater at 10:03. #7 car on road down. To lake at 10:40. To #9 at lake. Then INCREDIBLE lions 11:15-11:41. We see cars grouped and are maybe the tenth to join a single line, but Issa goes around the side (ah, I asked Karen to ask if he listens to other guides, and he tartly replied "I've been a guide 30 years and know where to go," but then asks if she WANTS him to tune to others. She's too pissed to answer.) and when someone leaves he manages to get into the first row. At first there's a group of three, then two, then more come, then more vans arrive, then other lions come, and I photo and video lots of this, and the most outrageous starts when one lioness comes and LIES AGAINST THE SIDE OF OUR VAN! I later make the joke he shouldn't have sprayed the side with catnip. Then others join her until there's a clutch of three or four RIGHT DOWN from the roof, and then two others go UNDER for some reason, either shade from the sun, or heat (but why?) from the engine. A cub lies playfully looking at the tire of the van behind us. More and more cluster around, more LIONS arrive, though Karen said she counted only eleven at the maximum, but I thought it had to surely be more than that. Photo and video, and someone says the other drivers begin cursing and waving their hands at Issa, but others say Issa tried to get them to move so he could get OUT, but they wouldn't move, everyone being ONLY for themselves and not caring for other cars. It goes on FOREVER, joking with Val to lower her hand to see if she can coax one out from under the van, and another suggests Ken get out so we can film a kill. Finally, someone says, the park rangers arrive and MAKE the outward of about 30 vans move away so that we can make our way out of the tangle. MOST incredibl experience! #30 vans at 11:31. I'm running out of film and low on video-battery reserve. Video ostrich at 12:10. Lunch at lake with hippos and what he calls a tawny eagle but I think is a batelleur. Lunch INSIDE (to avoid the birds, says Issa) while they sit on grass and lunch outside. Two trips to the john to pee, first a hole, second a row of 4 proper urinals. Then we walk around to 1:28, complaining we'd rather be seeing Olduvai than this, but some walk over to what they call (but doesn't look like to me) VERY close elephants, and I go to lakeside to look at inch-to-five-inch fish who've obviously been fed in the past and are looking for handouts now. Leave 1:28 and view lots of gnus and zebras, which are now old hat, and two cheetahs who won't move at 2:10. Black rhino afar at 2;37. #32 black rhino 2:40. #33 hippos 2:55. Pee stop 3:32-3:37 on way back up, he saying at 3PM we have to start to leave. NO Olduvai today. Start up at 3:30, top at 3:58. Serenera Lodge 4:13, luxurious, but not as great as Ngorongoro Crater Lodge for $800/night. Serenera HAS Jay and Karen's huge bag whch we put in the middle of the aisle. Pass entry road 4:27. Pass what may be Olduvai entrance 4:50. Video and #34 of four-wheel dust over the plains at the north end of Ngorongoro Park toward, and already on, the Serengeti Plains. Can't put geography together and Issa doesn't help when he says the rift is "behind the mountain behind us," though I think Olduvai is to our RIGHT overlooking the rift. 6PM pee stop IN wild for Issa and Ken. Arrive at Ndutu Safari Lodge 6:20PM (almost five hours for what was described as a 3-4 hours drive) at last. #35 Ndutu Tented Camp 6:24. Dinner at 7:30, Breakfast 7-9AM, leave at 8AM for all-day box-lunch game run. #36 group off to huts 6:28. To room 32 at 6:31, near end, Jay and Karen AGAIN at end: going by age? Finish fussing with films and luggage and video chargers 6:47. Roll 10(?) #1 sunset campfire 7PM. #2 genet in dining room 7:24. LOVELY talk with Evilene and Ronald about their 3 nights out, and can't find the girl I talked with in the morning. Dinner 7:50-9:10, totally served, not bad, Terry talking endlessly about his teams and managers. Put stuff away after I get back and try dental floss borrowed (no, GIVEN) by Val and it just doesn't work. Type 9:50-10:11, Ken writing more postcards, and I stop at top of notecard 11, refilling stack and film supply. Bed at 10:29, hard to go to sleep.

THURSDAY, 7/27/06: 2:45AM: Wake and wonder why it's so dark, then remember I stupidly forgot the electrcity goes out at 1AM, so I feel my way to my "spare things" bag and find the spare videotape I wanted to remember to include, and then, gratifyingly, the round shape of my flashlight. Sit and pee, and type about five lines OVER file 2's limit, which OF COURSE would happen now!, and retype to 2:53 and go to type dream, which I'll bet exceeds file 8! It doesn't, and I finish this at 2:57, ready to flash my way back to bed. 5:28AM: HARD to go back to sleep, start Actualism 3-4 times, and probably doze off, but look at watch at 4:05AM and then at 5:26 wake after dream and bathroom light is on, electricity back on and Ken has covered his head with his blanket rather than get up and close the bathroom door which HE left wide open (and of course accuses ME of not shutting the light OFF). Transcribe dream to 5:30 and again try to sleep, getting up at 6:25-6:30 to shit a slightly soft shit and lie until Ken goes into bathoom at 6:43AM and I start typing at 6:49. Ken showers and says the bottom won't drain, which he'll report when he mails his cards and starts to breakfast at 7:17, when I finally catch up to date with typing. Washed toe in shower and put bandage ACROSS top, leaving sides open to dry. Lay in bed before Ken gets up thinking of what I'll do when I get back: the big Four: 1) Website, 2) Pinnacle, 3) digital camera, 4) blender---not to mention catching up with everything from this AND German trip. Think about taking antidepressant, glad I have 4 Ambien left if I have to take all of them to survive getting home on Sunday, 4 days from now. 12 meals. Door next door slams. Ken opened drapes so I'm visible from outside if anyone chooses. Green pants' rip probably visible from back, but I'll wear them today and see what happens: who'll mention rip first. Put clean sock on right foot and look at invisible sore spot at left edge of upper lip. Also removed what might have been a tick, itchy on my side, just before trying to sleep. Other itches during night. Wash face in water DESCRIBED ON DOOR as "soapy with chemicals" and slather on deodorant and fill back pocket with toilet paper and type this at 7:29. Leave for breakfast hopefully completely ready for day at 7:34AM. Uji-millet porridge thick and brown and wheaten tasting, and cheese omelet with bacon and toast and NO hot chocolate to 7:55. Terry goes in other car (having totally avoided me as we near-passed on the path to breakfast), Joan having decided to spend the day in camp, later talking about her good lunch with 10 other people. Ken stays in front, I also alone in front row. Car leaves 8:01. #3 dik-dik 8:04. #4 Grant's gazelle (if NO stripe!) 27.5 km route-sign to Ndutu at 9AM. #7 red-headed agama lizard at Serengeti entrance 9:19. #9 Issa and Nyati (buffalo) at 9:20. #10-11 lions and cubs 9:39. #14-15 3 cats 10:25. Cheetah chases jackal 10:15. #17-18 elephant 11:51. Video all these too, feeling slightly out of it, a bit disappointed with sightings; few cars, few animals, long stretches of absolutely nothing but grass. #19-20 2 giraffes 12:25. #21-22 yellow fever acacias and giraffes at 12:31. #23-24 acacias and vultures. #26 baboon tree 12:46. Lunch from box on concrete benches 1PM-1:27, then walk through simulated gnu-migration footprints to 1:55, puzzling over guides that show end in Maasai Mara in December, and here ONLY in July, where they clearly aren't. Hot. Pee. Car goes 1:59. #31 topis 2:09. #32-33 male and female impala 2:12. #34 two hammerkopf and WATER 2:15. #35-36 male impalas 2:57. #37 crocodile 2:05. Roll 11(?) #4-5 lion 3:55. 24 elphants afar 4:30. Gate 4:34: pee, leave 4:44. Ndutu turn at 4:52. Video sand grouse and chicks at 5PM. #6-7 sunset flamingos 5:39 on Ndutu lake. Into car from lake 5:46, sort of soggy, but not as bad as Lake Nakuru. Leave tomorrow 8AM, lunch at 1PM at Ngorongoro entrance, then 3 hours to Tarangire, To Hotel Ndutu 6PM. Shower 6:15-6:35 in VERY soapy-feeling water. Dress and groom foot to 6:45, Ken waiting on porch. Take diazepam 6:50, to bar 6:42, have Cin-and-Cin, talking with more Dutch at campfire. Dinner NOT from buffet 7:40-9PM, GOOD food, meatballs. To bed 9:25, take Ambien 9:06, Ken's call is at 6:45, leaving 9:20 sleep possible.

FRIDAY, 7/28/06: 4:38AM: New late record! With Ambien, over 7 hours' sleep! Great! Pee and type to 4:43AM. No dreams to record. Shit 6:25-6:35, up with Ken at call at 6:44, out to watch non-existent sunrise 6:49-6:55. Terry and Gene and Jay and Karen and Duane already dressed and going to breakfast. Pack and wash face and put antibiotic on lip and take bag out at 7:14, and finish this up to date at 7:28, ready for last pee and breakfast. Breakfast 7:34-7:53: cheese omelet and ham and hot chocolate and apple juice with earplugs against screaming kids. Cipro and diazepam before breakfast. Last pee at 7:54 and to truck. Ken paid $61.50 bill. Board crowded car 8:03, not really a sunrise. Start to Olduvai 8:07. Three golden jackels videoed 8:45. 9:31 turn off to Olduvai. and there at 9:45. #11 gorge 9:51, looking much the same as before, only not so hot, and no Maasai village nearby. Talk 9:58-10:09 during which I take notes. One branch of river comes from Lake Ndutu. Sisal plant = Oldupai, and Professor Winkel changed it to Olduvai. In 1911 a German surveyed gorge, found elephant bones, got Berlin Museum to investigate and got 17,000-year-old skeleton. Leakey visited bones in Berlin Museum and he came in 1931, spent 28 year to find Zinj on July 17, 1959, 175 million years old. In 1960 found Boisie man and in 1963 found Erectus and in 1972 Leakey died. In 1978 Laetoli prints found by afarensis man 3.6 million years ago. Mary Leakey died in 1996. Two groups: Earthwatch and Rutgers digging now and will be back next June. Two million years ago gorge was under a lake 150 meters deep and 2 kilometers across. One branch 40 km long, another 30 km. FIVE layers: 2 million became basalt. Level 1 was homo hablis. Level 2, 1.5 million years ago, homo erectus. 800,000 years ago no life at level 3 due to drought. Level 4, gray, 400,000 years erectus found, having come back from Ethiopia. Level 5 100,000 years ago sapiens found. Inside is 1) Orientation room, 2) Laetoli room, found 3.6 million years ago. #12-13 Olduvai museum 10:19. #14 tracks buried 10:22. #15 gorge: DK and FLK are Zinj sites from 1.8 and 1.7 Million years ago. #16 gorge to east from new john (old Maasai Vilage site) about 11:07. #17 Maasai village room. MISTY and MUDDY on rim at noon. Out BELOW mist at 12:25. 12:30 stop at gate and pee in NEW place and wash hands with SOAP and dry under DRYER at 12:33. Leave 12:35, mainly running ahead of second truck. Onto PAVED road, as Larry said, "The first in 2.5 days!" Get gas 12:54-1:06 in 2 gas tanks: 139887 Tanzanian shillings for 103.63 liters, over $100. Kids get pens from Jay and Karen; they ask for chocolate, Jay says "Lo-fat diet." Lunch 1:28-1:50, Karen standing looking pained, pee, and call Issa to car at 2:02. Karen sick and throws up twice into plastic bags, regretting leaving them at side of road. Leave 2:05. Turn to track to Tarangire 3:18, to gate 3:30. Pee. #18 welcome to Tarangire and baobab 3:37. #19 elephant teeth 3:47. #20 acacia thorns 3:48. #21 two kinds of agave flowers and toilet sign in Swahili. Plural is VYOO, singular is CHOO. Leave entrance at 3:54, picking up brochure. Photo #23 baobab with hole and weaverbird nests 4:14. #24-25 elephant at 4:55. #26-27 giraffes 5:07.  #28-31 wild dogs (said to be very rare, not seen since 1994) 5:42. Video to 5:53! Arrive 6:19 to room 4 at 6:29. End tape number 59 at Tarangire Sopa Lodge with Jay and Karen by 6:35, Shit BIG, to bar 6:51. Drink DOUBE marguerita (no salt) and bloody mary on delightfully quiet outdoor patio that Ken had to be arm-twisted to enjoy to 7:45. Ken buys $20 cap to 8:02 and goes to john. Dinner 8:05-9:11. Ken shops to 7:16, wakeup call put in for 6:15. Leave at 7:30 instead of 8. To room 9:27. Shower is possble ONLY 6-8AM and 6-8PM, so I don't take one at ALL! Hope I don't degrade my toe. Take ALL pills: 6 evening, 2 night, Cipro, and Ambien at 9;35. Take Valium 9:45. Bed 9:58.

SATURDAY, 7/29/06: Wake and pee at 4:52, almost SEVEN hours. Wake 6:09 and turn fan off. Type 6:12-6:42. Wash face and packed bag out at 6:46. Stop typing at 6:55 to pack bag and get dressed and go to breakfast 7-7:21. LOST morning's PILLS!!! Tell Ken to look in room; he finds none; dash back, scraping my arm on concrete wall that I lick (arm, not wall), and don't find pills. Ken volunteers my last Cipro and I get replacement from box, leaving only two EVENING sets, so I'll have to fill out a MORNING set when I have dinner in NYC about 4PM. Leave 7:37. Joan and Duane notice rip at breakfast. #32 impalas(?) 7:50. Giraffe right near! #33-34 lions 8:33. #35 waterbuck and zebras 8:36. #36 elephant and videos 8:47. Stop at gate 9:03, NO pillbox in dop kit. Take SUNDAY AM pills, so take AM pills when I get home Sunday. Ken gives me one Cipro at 9:06. Pee. Leave 9:16. Scratched right elbow, licked many times. Front seat good view of birds and animals ON road. Long multi-top blossoms are Lion's Claws. To paved highway 9:26. #37 South Tanzania highway at 9:43 to clear out roll of film. Roll 12 (?) #1 Makuyuni 9;45. Elephant DASHES across road, followed by Maasai, too quick to film. at 9:50. Issa never saw this before. Some RAINDROPS on windshield 10:20. Into Arusha 10:45. Stop at Cultural Heritage 10:49. "Usa River market too far: 25 km." #2 Cultural Heritage 10:53."1/2 hour to 45 minutes for tanzanite." Video from center to 10:57. #3 animals at table 11:08. Pee 11:10. To #6 junk in Cultural Heritage Center, huger one being built next door. #7 native dusting crucifix 11:17. Sit in car and give Issa $30 tip and wait for Terry to return at 11:25. ALREADY 36 minutes. Karen and Jay noticed rip "about a week ago." Leave 11:41, driver getting commissions from management. #8 market outside Arusha 11:45. #9 downtown Arusha with clocktower halfway between Tanger and Capetown 11:56. To Arusha Hotel parking: "Grumeti" parking problem 11:59. Give Issa $30 and fill out Tanzania exit form by 12:06. Bus arrives 12:11. Get front seat to Nairobi for "my navigator" at 12:23. #10 CLOSED souvenir shop across from park that I THINK I remember from before, and monument 12:22. Cross to lunch 12:30-1, not bad, and $3 glass of white wine while Ken has 2. Shit big at 1:03. On bus 1:08 and get cards. Leave 1:14: misprint on Kenya entry: persons with females (Number of hommes) and males (Number of femmes) VERY confused translation until Ken says we're not traveling with ANY other person on our passports. Get gas 1:18-1:23. Forgot to get out bag-check slip from my souvenir pack! #11 new Arusha Hotel and African tulip tree. #12 market day 2:03. #13 Namanga at distance 3:01PM. Stamped at 3:05, pee 3:10. If not through border YET, and 2.5 hours to Nairobi, THAT'S the 6PM we "must" leave for airport! Bus goes at 3:18, vehicle enters Kenya 3:25. I pass and all get in bus by 3:34. AS we leave, leave last shop at 3:47. Make do-list to 4:01: Card 15A: GET FIRST: 1) luggage slip, 2) Kenya stamps, 3) black bag, 4) Ken: check British Airways clerk. PACK FOR PLANE: 1) pillbox, 2) diazepam, 3) Ambien, 4) Buspar, 5) Nose Vicks, 6) eyemask, 7) earplugs, 8) wallet, 9) ALL magazines/puzzles/sudoku, 10) plane itinerary/forms/slips, 11) house keys, 12) all film and videotape, 13) passport and exit card, 14) clean socks and underwear, 15) deodorant, 16) toothbrush and toothpaste. DUTY-FREE: 1) liquor, 2) write and send postcards. Back to notes: #14 roadwork passing in car 4:05. Nairobi 50km at 5:02. Traffic starts at 5:25. #15 Dansury(?) cement 5:33. Into Nairobi 5:54. #16 traffic 6:05. MANY MINUTES of video of traffic. AT hotel 6:17, find bag in storage room at 6:26 and gratefully tip the guy $1. To room 528 at 6:25, gratified that we HAVE room, because we use ALL the space! Meet at 7:20, I think, though Ken later says 7:30. Take diazepam 6:41. Separate all papers, film, hunt ENDLESSLY for stamps, wash face, brush teeth, Ken answers phone 3 times. Pack and bring ALL stuff down at 7:39 to be told we leave at 8PM! Go to bar with Val and Larry and Ken for a drink. Also get out pills for evening and evening and evening. Bag for stuff in blue bag that I STUFF into black bag as ONE carryon. Wait for drink at 7:42. Good gin and tonic (double) and get rid of all Tanzanian shillings except two 50-cent pieces that Larry gives me. LOCATE my green bag on bus-seat, in panic, at 8:05. Car leaves 8:07, into airport 8:30 to GREAT confusion: check TICKETS, screen luggage, get on ANOTHER line at 8:42. 9:15 check in WITH seat 27A. Restaurant is on WALK-UP fifth floor, so we have sandwiches and beer for $5 with Cipro having no aftertaste, dining with Joan and Duane, and later Paul and Dee. Dine til 10:04, VERY tired. To lounge at 10:18, suddenly remember to WRITE postcards, dash them off, mail them, and buy $10 Amarula for my duty-free. Back at 10:47 for Ken to go to john. HOT in overcrowded waiting room. Seated finally at 11:41 RIGHT over wing! But it's dark taking off, cloudy at dawn, and only pieces of London through clouds as our landing is delayed, so I really didn't miss much next to my African princess who takes up too much elbow room and the nice little old lady on the aisle. DEATHLY tired. Take Ambien and Diazepam at 11:50, DARING the flight to be cancelled or delayed. Lots of cuties onboard. 8:05 flight announced.

SUNDAY, 7/30/06: Off at 12:17AM, late from 11:50PM, map useful in front of each seat, mine dim but readable. Wait for quick-served dinner, but it's awful, eating only roll and butter, glass of white wine, and dessert. To sleep almost immediately and wake at 4:54, absolutely delighted, to pee and shit. Actually SLEPT maybe 4 hours and feel NOT THAT BAD. 3 hours to go. See lttle bit of Sicily at 5;58, 2:11 to go. Wakened again for breakfast at 6:37. 6:45AM "snack", 10:48PM NYC time. 7:31PM London information on all TV. It's light out, but cloudy in front of wing. WAY delayed, circling in and out of cloudy sun, landing, over LOTS of London, at 8:33. Finish brain-twisters to 9. MUCH trouble putting SHOES on, feet VERY swollen, maybe affected by toe. Off plane at 8:46. [Finally get to typing card 17 at 10:39AM (8:39AM London time), not wanting to change watch until tomorrow, annoying kids screaming and bouncing on chairs across from me with parents doing NOTHING to control them. LONG "connecting" line in Terminal 4 to 9:30, being called over by SWEET clerk who lets me have the American penny on his desk, saying I'll double it, and doesn't ask for my "can't find" blue ticket, settling for my e-ticket printout and passport and verifying my window seat BEHIND wing. Sit while Ken shits, and start typing at 9:32. Finally finished up to date at 10:42, relieved to be finished with that task and can now look through Ken's Herald Tribune til 11AM. 11:20 start to gate 22 to 11:35, call for boarding at 11:42, but wait in passageway until getting to seat only at 11:55. 6:45 flight, 82° in NYC (and that's at 3:55AM???) Off at 1:08, #17 edge of some castle 1:09. Lunch soon after leaving good views of England, Scotland, Isle of Skye, some solitary islands and coasts, one VERY steep island (with a twin nearby) reminding of St. Kilda. Doze for a bit and look out window and there's #18 GREENLAND, the second time, at 4:18, much clearer and less iced than before. Video and photo to #22, Greenland to 4:28. Then rest after passing and do GOOD Actualism to 4:53, where "Ground of Being" revealed that EACH virtual particle springing into being during Heisenberg's uncertainty interval is TRULY a black hole creating an entire self-contained universe AT each instant AT each Planck-volume, filling the however-many dimensions with NEW creations with UNCOUNTABLE pleasures and people and emotions and writings. Then at 5:03 notice the guy next to me awake, so take the opportunity (the first and only) to get out and pee, and get back at 5:08 to start finishing this, getting my entry card at the same time and getting a glass of water, and finishing this as we near Goose Bay, with a fantasy of flying over a clear Grand Falls, though sadly the sky is completely clouded now at 5:14 with 2:38 to destination, 158 minutes, not quite down to the 133 minutes only 1/3 left, flying at 37000 feet at 556 mph, 1322 miles to go, with a headwind of 33 kph where we actually started with a TAILWIND, unusual in flying west. Get out passport to fill in form with babies STILL screaming through my earplugs at 5:20PM, only 10:20AM in NYC. FINALLY finish Trib puzzle---HARD---at 5:42. Clouds over Newfoundland at 2:09 to go. Clouds clear at 5:55. Snack at 6:49, over Houlton, 63 minutes to go. #23 Boats and island 7:35. #25 Brookhaven ring (?) 7:41. #26 close in 7:46. #27 Jones Beach 7:50. Land (bumpy) 7:54. To #30 before landing. Take the rest of the roll on Monday before taking them all to the post office in a flimsy cardboard Express Mail envelope. To immigration line at 8:09. To luggage carousel, which stops when it's overloaded, at 8:25. Luggage at LAST, when we're beginning to despair, though we know ours would be boarded first since we had such a long layover in London, and thus would come out last, at 8:50. Into cab with NO line at 8:57, pleasant Jamaican driver, and get home at 9:40. No New York Times at desk, borrow cart to bring all the stuff up and find today's Times still in front of my door (missing the magazine, book review, and Arts sections), and Beverly doesn't have anything but pieces of Saturday's, saying "I asked Toba, if he came out first, to pick it up, but I think most of them were taken by someone else." Finish fussing with just relaxing at 10:50. Dinner 11:20-11:44 of tuna melt, quite filling, and put in new set of pills while practically falling asleep on my feet. Ken calls THREE times about price of cab and two Beard messages: do I want 11/27 truffles dinner, and I'm seeing him next at Beard on August 9. I jerk off quite soft and unfeelingly, very disappointed with my fantasies for a fantastic first cum, watch TV to 1:10AM and get to bed.

MONDAY, 7/31/06: Wake at 7:33AM (still African time) to transcribe dream and pee and drink water, electric clock by bed flashing so Paul messed it up in some way, but it's like 11PM or something. No, it's 12:46AM, at least TODAY. Took Ambien at 7:53 and it only lasted until 9:43, less than 2 hours! Jerk off to 1:38PM, CUTTING myself and making parts VERY swollen, which I doctor with a bit of aloe juice. Have breakfast, milk thawed, look through mail, and start keeping NYC time. Phone list: 1) Carolyn 9:50-10:13, Tristan to have operation in mid-August, feeling OK now; 2) Mildred 10:14-10:27, happy to have me back, will try to lunch Thursday at Tocqueville; 3) Charles 10:28-10:45, leaving for island this afternoon; 4) for John I leave word, but he calls back 11:53-11:57, saying he watered on Friday; 5) for Shelley I leave word, she calls when I'm out, then we talk 5:20-6:10PM; 6) Sherryl 10:47-11:05: her bone and CAT-scans showed her current chemo isn't working, so she has a meeting today for NEW treatments, which I called later to find includes oral tablets the government doesn't pay for, as it did for intravenous, and it's going to be VERY expensive, so she'll pay through the "donut hole" and then catastrophic coverage starts; 7) Spartacus has diabetes type 2 and is starting lowest medications, says that Duane-Reade gives AUTOMATIC monthly renewals and has short lines and quick filling times, so maybe I should check comparison prices on Ambien, which my plan doesn't cover, and change from Rite-Aid; he also asks that I save all New York Magazines for him; 8) check Juno for 67 messages from 11:37-12:18, nothing very great, and discard many to reduce size of storage in preparation for photos from Rob, if ever. Looked through mail to 2:25, doing lots of pleasant Sudokus, lunch of Braunschweiger and yogurt at 3:36, reset watch, take last pictures and put them in Court Street mailbox that picks up at 5PM, pick up three prescriptions for Zetia, Proscar, and Ambien, get groceries, renew my gym membership for an astounding $525 with a pleasant new girl who loves travel, and back at 5PM to see that I have a seventh message, so I make a phone list: 1) Ken on departure day, 2) Spartacus for Paul, 3) junk, 4) some computer update that I don't even have, 5) junk, 6) Spartacus welcoming me back at 2PM on Sunday, 7) Shelley at 4:01 today when I call her back. Continue through mail to 6:53, getting tired, shower at last, transfer AlphaSmart to WP51 while clearing up stuff, including bidis from Sunday and this morning, and have dinner at 8:15, watching Hugh Laurie on Actor's Studio to 9 and History of Athens to 10PM, recording more, and get to bed at 10:05, just remembering to take night pills.

TUESDAY, 8/1/06: Pee at 5:14AM, lovely to have slept over 7 hours, 79° out, feet SLIGHTLY less swollen. Take melitonin to try for more sleep, but do a good Actualism session and get up at 6:05, officially 8 hours. 78° out, maybe today will NOT be the record-breaker predicted: Spartacus said it never DID get to 100 here---yet. Proofread and print Dreams pages, then decide to bring this up to date at 7:30AM, feeling good.
SATURDAY, 8/5/06: 7:55PM: Finally finish proofreading these pages, ready for photo-list and summary page and only final Visa and bank bills to calculate.



FRI,7/14: Fly JFK-London 8:05PM-7:14AM: 6 hours, 9 minutes. Lose puzzles.
SAT,7/15: London: Victoria and Albert Museum for Modernism and others. Lunch at Capitol, Michelin 2-star, good. Fly London-Nairobi 8:30PM-6:24AM: 7 hours,56min
SUN,7/16: Nairobi: Norfolk Hotel lunch and drinks. Nap about 3 hours, complimentary bottle of wine, dine at Carnivore, bed at 9:54PM.
MON,7/17: Africana Curio Shop pee-stop, through Thika and Nyeri to Abadare Country Club to drop off bag on porch, bus to Ark for bird-feeding, talk, dinner and try for cold sleep at 9:47PM at 6450 foot altitude.
TUE,7/18: On Ark deck 12:10-1:05AM, 3-7AM, breakfast at Ark, bus to Abadare, finding 12 rolls of film missing. Through Nanyuki to Mt. Kenya Safari Club for lunch, then Animal Orphanage 2:27-4:12, drinks, dance, dinner, bed 9:53PM.
WED,7/19: Drive via Nyahururu to Subukia for coffee and tea plantation talk. Coriolis demonstration at equator. Buy four rolls of film from Simon. Lake Nakuru for flamingos, dine in Lodge.
THU,7/20: Through Nakuru town, Narok for gas, Olare Gift Shop pee-stop, and to Maasai Mara Senaken gate 1:22. To Fig Tree Camp, game drive, dinner, RAIN!
FRI,7/21: Balloon ride 6:30-7:40 for $385 for hundreds of thousands of migrating beasts, with great champagne breakfast and bloody marys. Back to Fig Tree for game drive 11:30-3:24, late lunch, RAIN! Game drive 4:34-6:11, muddy, small dinner, and bed at 9PM without Ambien for first time in three days.
SAT,7/22: Visit Maasai village 8:04-9:18. Olare Gift Shop pee-stop. Narok to lousy road to Nairobi 3:10, lunch at Tamambo Restaurant. Giraffe center 5:08-5:29, to Karen Blixen house 5:39-6:20, buying two books for $40, terrible Nairobi traffic videotapes. Mediocre Indian Restaurant food and bed at 10:22.
SUN,7/23: Hand Carvers Den 10:45-11:15. Amboseli gate 12:33, Amboseli Sopa Lodge at 1:35PM for late lunch. Game drive 3:51-6:10 to exit, to Lodge at 6:35.
MON,7/24: Finally identify all couples. Game drive 7:30-1:22, visiting Amboseli Lodge for brochure, climb hill. Lunch at Sopa, awful. Punishing walk-tour with Maasai Tommy, getting toe-blister 4:15-6:40. Meeting with Simon, nurse calls me out, hydrogen peroxides me and prescribes Cipro for anti-infection. Mediocre dinner and bed at 9:25.
TUE,7/25: Wake 12:30 and think. Wake 3:32 and pee. Up 5:32, just under 8 hours' sleep. To Namanga, Kenya, to transfer bus to Arusha, Tanzania. Mt. Meru Game Lodge for great buffet lunch and photos. To Ngorongoro Farm House at 5:45 via Arusha, Lake Manyara, and Karatu. Paul, an Iraqw, plays his zeze for our dollars. Good dinner, great stars on lawn, bed at 9:25.
WED,7/26: Wake at 12:30, 3:19, and 5:12, sleeping less than 8 hours. Into Ngorongoro Crater 9:48-3:58. INCREDIBLE lions 11:15-11:41. Lunch at hippos-in-distance, elephants-neared lake 12:30-1:28. Serenera Lodge for Jay and Karen's luggage, lost in Namanga yesterday. To Ndutu Safari Lodge after almost five-hour drive. Good served dinner, bed at 10:29.
THU,7/27: Wake 2:45-2:57. Wake and doze after 5:28. Start typing 6:49, sleeping less than 8 hours. Serengeti game drive 8:01-6PM with box lunch 1PM-1:59 with gnu-footprint migration display. Good served dinner, bed 9:25.
FRI,7/28: Wake 4:38, 7:13 sleep with Ambien! Type to 4:43, doze, shit at 6:25, so probably over 8 hours for first time in ages. Olduvai Gorge for slightly bigger museum 9:45-11:45. Box lunch 1:28-1:50, Karen sick. To Tarangire Gate at 3:30. Game drive to 6:19, with rare wild dogs. Drinks on outdoor patio, shop, dinner at Tarangire Sopa Lodge, good singing entertainment, bed 9:58.
SAT,7/29: Pee at 4:52, almost seven hours, wake 6:09, approximately eight hours. Lose morning pills. Tarangire departure 7:37-9:03, to paved highway 9:26. Through Makuyuni to Arusha for Cultural Heritage 10:49-11:41, Arusha Hotel lunch 12:30-1. Tanzania to Nairobi 1:23-6:17, rush through repacking, drinks, Bus leave 8:07 to airport 8:30. Confusion. Sandwiches and beer for dinner, write and mail postcards, buy Amarula. Get on plane: Ambien at 11:50.

SUN, 7/30: Fly Nairobi-London 12:17AM-(sleep FOUR HOURS!)-8:33AM, 8:16 flight. Fly London-JFK 1:08-(past Greenland!)-7:54, 6:46 flight.Bed 1:10AM(9:10PM NYC).