What do you dream about?
When her older sister showed her photos of the giraffe roaming the African savanna, three year old Michele was mesmerized. A lifelong fascination with giraffes began that day.
On her first trip to the zoo she remembers, perhaps imperfectly, that the giraffes followed her as she circled their enclosure. From that day she "dreamed of Africa."
Visiting Tanzania, climbing the mountain, was the realization of a dream. One that continues...
Today Michele works toward saving giraffes, inspiring people to climb Kilimanjaro and looks for opportunities to connect the world to her true home- Tanzania.
The Dream Realized...
The long time dream of visiting Africa was fulfilled on Mount Kilimanjaro. The most often asked question was, "How was it, traveling alone to Africa?"
"It was disconcerting, as are most adventures...
Alone in a foreign land, with a stranger, on a deserted mountain--without no phone, services, and even other travelers. Kefas, my guide, was kind, friendly and encouraging. I didn't meet other climbers, but I met "the climber." We bonded that week and became more than friends. By the end of the trip, we were family."
"You never know the circumstances that will bring you to your destiny. If I had not traveled alone I would most likely never have gotten my messages, nor bonded with Kefas. The circumstances that brought me to the summit were the ones that changed my life."
January 2022 The Return
Five years after the climb, Michele returned to Tanzania to visit her now adopted family.
In the tradition of Eat, Pray, Love and Wild, Before the Empress: Messages from Mount Kilimanjaro chronicles one woman’s journey up a mountain and into her soul.