Sunday, September 16, 2018


With just a little over three weeks until our October 8 departure, I took the last of four typhoid vaccination pills last Tuesday. It's one of the recommended vaccinations by the CDC for people traveling to Tanzania. I will also begin taking daily anti-malaria pills one day before arriving in Tanzania and continuing for one week after leaving the country. It's always better to be safe than sorry.

And while I'm on the topic, I am also packing both prescription and over-the-counter meds for all the possible ailments that can besiege a traveler in a foreign country including an anti-biotic and Immodium for travelers' diarrhea, cold meds in case I contract a dreaded cold, Tylenol and Aleve for those aches and pains that come with being of a certain age, along with various creams and ointments for this and that. You get my drift. 

Typically, when traveling abroad most of the over-the-counter stuff could be purchased locally as needed, but traveling on a safari to the Serengeti is not your typical destination, so it's advised to come prepared. I am.

These pills are a live Typhoid vaccine and are taken as one pill every other day.

Because of our post Serengeti Safari trip to Zanzibar, Doug and I are limited to 33# for one checked bag and 11# for one carry-on for each of us. With that weight limit in mind, last week I began laying out my clothes in the guest bedroom. Look who finds it her new favorite place to sleep. Do you suppose our 7-month-old puppy Scout knows that we'll be leaving her behind?

Another view of my travel wardrobe, sans Scout, shows a mostly monochromatic look, not my usual travelin' style. With the exception of the black and red pile in the upper left, which are my Amsterdam clothes, the rest is 'safari drab' as I call it. (Okay, I threw in a bright yellow-orange t-shirt in, just because. And the bottom orange/white shirt has since been eliminated.) Also, what may be of interest is that most items I found at my local Goodwill store over the last eight months since we signed up for this trip. (I told you I love the anticipation.)

(Note here: brown, beige, and green are not my usual or favorite colors,
but I'm a rule follower . . . most of the time. See below.) 

The reason for the 'safari drab' is practical, not fashionable. According to OAT guidelines, the colors black and bright blue attract the Tsetse fly; hence, don't wear those colors. Also, bright colors may distract certain animals, so avoid wearing those colors especially during the game viewing drives. In addition, previous travelers have discouraged wearing white since the red dirt tends to discolor it. Point well taken. 

During our visit, the temperatures can be hot, 80-90 degrees F., so light colored and weight fabrics are best. Also, they can easily be washed and dried in a day. So, everything is in the color range known as khaki, except, of course, the bright yellow shirt which I'll wear when visiting the school or the village.

As for shoes, I am taking one pair. Yes, you read it right, ONE pair. OAT recommends a lightweight hiking shoe or comfortable athletic shoe that can easily be taken on and off. Apparently we are not only allowed but encouraged to stand on the seats of the safari vehicles to get a better view as long as we take our shoes off

With that in mind, along with the red dirt we'll be walking upon, I found what I consider the perfect shoe from my favorite shoe company, TOMS. And to make it even more perfect (is that even possible?) I added elastic laces to turn a supportive tie-up sneaker into an easy on, easy off slip-on. VOILA!

So for now, my travel wardrobe, including my Amsterdam clothes for our pre-pre-trip and post-post-trip layovers (more on that in another blog), fits neatly in the required OAT provided duffel bag. Yes, for safari-style trips these uniform, soft duffel bags make it easier to load the safari vehicles in which we will be riding. I've already begun personalizing my bag, as per recommendations by many, with bright pink handle covers. I will later add bright pink luggage straps to make my bag even more obvious among those of my fellow travelers. 

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