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Sabbatical Pictures

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1: AFRICA ASIA EUROPE | "If you limit your choices to what seems possible or reasonable, you disconnect yourself from what you truly want, and all that is left is a compromise."

2: “Twenty years from now you will be more disappointed by the things that you didn’t do than by the ones you did do. So throw off the bowlines. Sail away from the safe harbor. Catch the trade winds in your sails. Explore. Dream. Discover” – Mark Twain

4: CAPE TOWN & THE CAPE PENINSULA

7: Out of the night that covers me, I thank whatever gods may be For my unconquerable soul. I am the master of my fate: I am the captain of my soul. - Invictus

8: CAPE TOWN

12: VICTORIA FALLS | David Livingstone gave the falls the name 'Victoria Falls' in honour of Queen Victoria, but the indigenous name of 'Mosi-oa-Tunya' — literally meaning the 'Cloud that Thunders' — is also well known. The waterfall is located in southern Africa on the Zambezi River between the countries of Zambia and Zimbabwe. It forms the largest sheet of falling water in the world

13: "Only those who will risk going too far can possibly find out how far they can go." T.S. Eliot

14: KANDIBEACH | lake Malawi | MALAWI

15: "It's really beautiful. It feels like God visits everywhere else but lives in Africa"

18: There is no difference between growing old and living

20: OVER LANDING

21: It is always sad to leave a place to which one knows one will never return. Such are the melancolies of travel: perhaps they are one of the most rewarding things about it.

23: No matter how far a person can go the horizon is still way beyond you.

24: MOUNT KILLIMANJARO It is the highest mountain in Africa and the highest free-standing mountain in the World at 5,895 metres or 19,341 feet above sea level. | DiMoja

25: If your dreams don't scare you they are not big enough

29: "Somewhere between the bottom of the climb and the summit is the answer to the mystery why we climb."

30: Barranco Wall

32: “Don't wait until everything is just right. It will never be perfect. There will always be challenges, obstacles and less than perfect conditions. So what. Get started now. With each step you take, you will grow stronger and stronger, more and more skilled, more and more self-confident and more and more successful.”

33: “Don't wait until everything is just right. It will never be perfect. There will always be challenges, obstacles and less than perfect conditions. So what. Get started now. With each step you take, you will grow stronger and stronger, more and more skilled, more and more self-confident and more and more successful.”

34: AUGUST 31, 2012 Our wake up call was at 11:30PM of Day 6. Usually with our wake up calls we got a hot cup of tea in our tents which made it extra hard to get out of the sleeping bag. This wake up call didn’t have that we didn’t need it. The excitement was great already. The inside of our tent was covered in ice (this usually happened with the outside only). Any doubts we might have had of wearing all the clothes we had were immediately gone. With 2 pairs of socks, 6 layers of pants, 7 layers of long sleeve tops/jackets, a balaclava, a hat, a scarf, 2 pairs of gloves, a headlamp, hiking poles, hand/toe warmers and a backpack with 3 litters of water and snack I headed out of the tent to be bathed by the most radiant full moon. The moon lit up the mountain, the edge of the cliff we were on, and the many hikers who were passing our campsite since they had camped at Barafu Camp (this was likely hour 2 of their hike already). The hike from the campsite to Stella Point (the top of the Crater, but still not the highest point in the mountain) took 6.5 hours. There is very little of this worth re-living it was a mentally and physically difficult experience.The hike was extremely steep (we gained 3300+feet in elevation). It was extremely cold – we have to summit at night because that is when the ground is frozen. That’s important because the ice holds together the scree that makes up the path, basically it forces the slippery and loose gravel and dirt to stay relatively in place. The cold and steepness I prepared for, but the inability to breathe due to the high altitude was terrible. Every breath I took felt insufficient. I was gasping for air most of the long night. Not every once in a while, but literally every single breath. One thing I also didn’t consider was how monotonous that hike was. Because of the darkness, and the ground, 85% of my time was spent looking at the boots of the person in front of me. Trying to follow their steps in the dark.The first hour and a half of my ascent was fine – I had some shortness of breath but was feeling alright. At around hour 2 (about 2.30 AM) I absolutely had to pee. So when we got a short break , I stepped out of the path to go squat behind the biggest rock I could find. Undressing from 6 pants was a major ordeal that took almost all the breath I had left. The cold on my butt was terrible, but the view from my pee spot, as usual, was beautiful. I could see the beautiful full moon lighting the sky and hundreds of little head torches filling their way zig-zaging up the mountain path. After this, things turned badly for me. For the next 2 hours I felt hot and cold at the same time, the elevation was getting to me and my digestive system stopped cooperating. I felt very ill, all while walking up the steep and slippery path with consistent shortness of breath. The feeling of shortness of breath continued to amaze me - it’s as though I had done heavy physical exercise and when I needed to catch my breath a weight was put on my chest so that my lungs couldn’t fill. At this point, amazing Bruce was my saving grace! He pushed me (literally and verbally) at times, he set a slow and steady pace for me that I could follow, he carried my bag, helped me drink water, he told me when to drink and when to eat, when I fell off a rock i tried to sit on he determined where I was to sit during breaks, he did so much I’m embarrassed I needed all that help, but he kept me warm and functioning, he encouraged me along. At his advice I belched a third of my climb up and it helped with my stomach! | However long the night, the dawn will break. - African Proverb

35: Around 4:15AM the cold and shortness of breath became front and center. I continued on with the trance I had established for myself mumbling “right foot, left foot, right foot, left foot. Don’t stop keep going Right foot, left foot step step” I remembered here the Crossfit Credo “I will give my very best. My best might vary from day to day, hour to hour, minute to minute. But in this moment, I will give my very best”. It was the mental strength I needed, my body would follow if my mind was strong. A little before 6AM, Bruce stopped and showed me on the night sky the tell-tale signs that the sun would start rising in about 30 minutes. This gave me a new found energy and I became confident that I would not fail to reach the top – so I pushed ahead despite the pain. During these 30 minutes of pushing hard was when I knew without a doubt that I was going to make it. This was the greatest moment of the long and difficult night climb. Every inch of my body and mind knew I was going to make it and it was a loud euphoria echoing in my head. I watched the sun rise and reached Stella Point. It is only when you reach Stella Point that you really internalize that the “mountain” is actually a volcano. Stella Point is at the edge of the crater. Ahead of you it’s a hole where once an active volcano existed. I was so exhausted still but to come this far and not make it to Uhuru Peak (the official highest point) seemed wrong. Looking out at the opposite side of the crater it didn’t seem very bad I knew it would be 45 minutes, but it seemed like a slightly slanted stroll compared to what we had just done. In reality it turned out to be grueling 45 minutes breathing being my biggest challenge. But pole, pole I made it. We took our group picture to prove we made it!. I was finally able to stop and take in the view the glaciers on top of the mountain the crater of the ancient volcano these were views I had never seen and that despite my best efforts the pictures don’t convey what it truly is like. It takes your breath away. I wish I had stayed up there longer but I was exhausted, and there was still hiking down the mountain before any real rest. Most people had descended already the top of the mountain had almost no sign that 450 people tried to summit that night. After staying for a few minutes we headed down what took almost 8 hours to climb up, took just 1hr and 45 minutes down. The steepness of it was tremendous. For the first time I was glad we hiked at night the ground was no longer frozen and we were almost “skiing” down the mountain but also the steepness would have crushed my spirits had I seen it from the bottom as I now saw it from the top. The next day, the mountain behind our tents seemed different. To me, it didn’t feel conquered it just stood there still with its greatness and imposing power. It allowed me to walk upon it. I was changed but she wasn’t. Afterwards.... it still feels surreal. Did I really make it? The routine was a constant drumbeat bad sleep, morning call, pack, eat, walk, eat, walk, eat, bad sleep, start over. I made it to the top of the highest free standing mountain in the world. It feels like it was a dream but I did make it. I remember at 5:45AM that August 31st night/morning when I knew inside of me that I was going to make it. The euphoria of knowing I would reach the top was so great! that feeling I don’t forget. That isn’t hazy. The memory is so concrete you could touch it. After coming down and reflecting with others I realized how we all had similar ways of tricking ourselves that night “step step”, “right foot left foot”, “breathe breathe”. They were chants we repeated to ourselves through that cold long night. The trance only those who climbed it understand. A rhythm for our bodies and our minds. But we conquered Kili literally one small slow but determined step at a time .

38: Never measure the height of a mountain until you have reached the top. Then you will see how low it was.

41: TANZANIA SERENGETI NATIONAL PARK

50: Serengeti, Lake Manyara, Ngorongoro Crater

52: Swahili: Journey | Serengeti National Park is widely regarded as the best wildlife reserve in Africa due to its density of predators and prey. It spans some 30,000 km2 (12,000 sq mi). The Serengeti hosts the largest terrestrial mammal migration in the world, which is one of the ten natural travel wonders of the world. The name Serengeti is an approximation of the word used by the Maasai to describe the area. The Maasai people had been grazing their livestock in the open plains which they knew as “endless plain” for around 200 years when the first European explorers visited the area. | SAFARI

56: Why is it you can never hope to describe the emotion Africa creates? You are lifted. Out of whatever pit, unbound from whatever tie, released from whatever fear. You are lifted and you see it all from above. When you leave Africa, as the plane lifts, you feel that more than leaving a continent you're leaving a state of mind. Whatever awaits you at the other end of your journey will be of a different order of existence

58: EUROPE

64: “Travel is more than the seeing of sights; it is a change

65: that goes on, deep and permanent, in the ideas of living.”

66: Emperor Julius Caesar was cremated and thus has no grave or tomb, however, on this site people still leave flowers and notes on the altar to commemorate his memory.

81: There are two ways to get enough. One is to continue to accumulate more and more. The other is to desire less.

82: INDIA

92: VIETNAM

95: The moment you doubt whether you can fly, you cease for ever to be able to do it. Peter Pan

96: Barranco Wall

101: "Not all those who wander are lost."

102: In spite of illness, in spite even of the archenemy sorrow, one can remain alive long past the usual date of disintegration if one is unafraid of change, insatiable in intellectual curiosity, interested in big things, and happy in small ways.

108: CAMBODIA

110: To travel is to discover that everyone is wrong about other countries

115: The Khmer Rouge killed nearly two million Cambodians from 1975 to 1979, spreading like a virus from the jungles until they controlled the entire country, only to systematically dismantle and destroy it in the name of a Communist ideal. | Pol Pot declared that he was turning Cambodia back to "Year Zero," and intellectuals, businessmen, Buddhists and foreigners were all purged.

117: “When you travel, remember that a foreign country is not designed to make you comfortable. It is designed to make its own people comfortable.”

118: SILVER | phnom penh | PAGODA

119: TREASURERS are housed inside the Silver Pagoda, including 17th century baccarat crystal Buddha (the "Emerald Buddha" of Cambodia) and a life-sized gold Maitreya Buddha decorated with 9584 diamonds, the largest of which weighs 25 carats.

132: THAILAND

144: make a radical change in your lifestyle and begin to boldly do things which you may previously never have thought of doing, or been too hesitant to attempt. So many people live within unhappy circumstances and yet will not take the initiative to change their situation because they are conditioned to a life of security, conformity, and conservation, all of which may appear to give one peace of mind, but in reality nothing is more damaging to the adventurous spirit within a man than a secure future. The very basic core of a man's living spirit is his passion for adventure. The joy of life comes from our encounters with new experiences, and hence there is no greater joy than to have an endlessly changing horizon, for each day to have a new and different sun. If you want to get more out of life, you must lose your inclination for monotonous security and adopt a helter-skelter style of life that will at first appear to you to be crazy. But once you become accustomed to such a life you will see its full meaning and its incredible beauty.

146: Once you have traveled, the voyage never ends, but is played out over and over again in the quietest chambers. The mind can never break off from the journey

147: Now more than ever do I realize that I will never be content with a sedentary life, that I will always be haunted by thoughts of a sun-drenched elsewhere. - Isabelle Eberhardt 1904

149: What would you do if you knew you would not fail?

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  • By: Priscila S.
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  • Title: Sabbatical Pictures
  • Pictures from Africa, Europe and Southeast Asia
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  • Published: about 4 years ago

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