Came across this map the other night and found it quite amusing.
18 October 2010
The final leg of the journey really was perfect for me. The sun was setting and there were huge vertically developed clouds on the horizon. I snapped a few photos out the window and sat back in my seat and thought, "How lucky...no...how blessed am I to be where I am at this moment." This realization came as I sat in the co-pilot seat of a Cessna 208 Caravan flying 12,500 feet over the open landscape of the DR Congo. It had been a long day of flying for us. We had been dropping off cargo and flying passengers between 3 different remote airstrips in the region. It was my first opportunity since moving here to go along on one of the flights and something I had been looking forward to since the beginning of my "Josh in the Congo" endeavor. With my dad and two of my brothers being pilots, I had spent plenty of time in small planes so that was nothing new. But doing it in a Third World country and in the capacity of helping people made it special for me. I loved every minute of it. Flying in low over the city as we come in for the approach, landing, takeoff, flying through clouds, turbulence. It was all exciting.
At one point during the flight I did try to read Heart of Darkness, Joseph Conrad's significant work of English literature about the Congo. I thought it would be profound to read it as I soared over the country the book was about, but I made it through 4 pages before deciding I could finish it later. Not as profound as I thought but it earned the title of this post.
12 October 2010
Well I survived my first bout with illness in Africa. It was a 'Rumble in the Jungle' but the main rumbling going on was that in my stomach as the illness struck swiftly and forcefully in the night. After 4 hours straight of hugging the toilet and having everything inside my body rapidly fleeing out any orifice it could find, I saw the light of day. Unfortunately that was just the sun rising and I still had to battle this sickness. The symptoms continued to attack with lethargy, back and stomach pain, leg cramps, fever and chills. As a result I got to visit a local clinic and have a malaria test done. Results came back positive a couple hours later. However, it wasn't until about 22 hours after my first attack on my body that I was able to keep any solids or liquids down. But finally I was able to start the medication and the illness relented. Knocked me off my feet for a few days but I am back at full force. We decided afterwards that I probably had a stomach flu, that has been going around here, along with the Malaria. I am just so blessed with many things I guess.
African sickness: 0