I discovered that, when traveling through the Dark Continent, it’s best to assume things will routinely go wrong, seemingly bizarre happenstances will be treated as the status quo, and life will go on as it has for countless centuries.
My Mt. Kilimanjaro climbing buddies and I ran smack into a bunch of Africa happenings and found the best way to deal with the setbacks, scares and strangeness was to shrug one’s shoulders and quote Leonardo DiCaprio ‘s character from ‘Blood Diamond,’ who’d say, "T.I.A., baby. T.I.A." (T.I.A. translates to ‘This is Africa’).
And, boy, did we have plenty of opportunities to use the T.I.A. phrase, including:
– Battling with Hummer-sized spiders in our hotel rooms.
– Only showering between the hours of 6-9 in the am and pm. Because hot water simply wasn’t available the rest of the day.