Kili-Day 6
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01/06/03
The final day on Kili. We had great views of the peak from Mweka camp in the morning,069-Kili day6.jpg (154635 bytes) we figured that the rainy season had just ended since it was our last day on the mountain! Only had a few hours of hiking ahead of us down to the Mweka gate and we thought that the recently improved trail would be great the whole way. Compared to what the trail probably used to be, it was great. Through the rain forest the entire way and back to the huge lush trees and moss covered vines. 
071-Kili day6.jpg (291952 bytes) At the gate we all had to sign out and wait for our transportation. There were other hikers around who had just finished, plenty of porters glad to be finished, a small stand with beer and t-shirts, and little kids washing boots and trekking poles for 500-1000 Tanzanian shilling. The beer tasted great and that was the best boot-washing I ever got! A little ways down the road to the big ole Mercedes was a fury of people selling stuff to people who just got off the mountain. Strange how far down the price gets reduced if you ask enough times?!
The ride back to Marangu Hotel was interesting. We had to stop for a quick fix of something under the floorboards. With some bailing wire and a few whacks of a rock we were on the road again. Not for long though! Must've been the same thing again, but took a little longer to fix this time. Ends up that the clutch linkage or something broke, so the rest of the way back to Marangu whenever it was time to shift, the driver would nod and someone would start hitting the shifter with a rock to switch gears! Guess anything goes in Tanzania, especially without many repair shops nearby. 
Once back it was time for the porter party! This is where all the porters and guides get paid, we buy them some beers, and everyone sings more songs. Me, Steve, and Susyn were on beer patrol so we got to get all the beers and serve them out. It was a nice change of pace (and seemed like a nice gesture) to serve them finally. With "beer boobs" and a crate full of beer we did our job to the best of our ability! Tradition has each group sing a song. We butchered "Old McDonald" and they blew us away 3 notes into the "Kilimanjaro Song".
After the porter party it was time for doing some wash in the tub and airing out gear. Got to sleep in a bed and get cleaned up before heading off onto the safari the following day......

070-Kili day6.jpg (250494 bytes) View from Mweka Camp; Me and my porter, Marcus 072-Kili day6.jpg (312093 bytes)

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