Unanimous Travelers’ Advice – Lose the Embarrassment and Find the Gorillas

It isn’t easy to allow yourself to ask for advice from others on a subject about which you feel vulnerable. And it can be particularly difficult to do so in an online community.

But that is precisely what docklang does in the Fodor’s forums:

The last thing on my bucket list is gorilla tracking. I have done extensive research on both Rwanda and Uganda.


My original plan was to go to Bwindi. But I read that the aged are not necessarily assigned groups nearer camp as they are in Rwanda and it is hard to trade. But Gorilla Forest Camp offers these nifty carried chairs for the infirm or fatigued for the cost of the extra porters. Cost is not a problem but would I find this so embarrassing as to be uncomfortable and spoil the experience?? I look perfectly normal but have exercise induced asthma and one painful knee but still really want this experience.

And in what I can only describe as heartwarming, everyone – and I mean every traveler who has posted on the thread at the time of this writing – encourages docklang to go, see the gorillas, and for heaven’s sake use the chair without even a twinge of embarrassment:

If they’ve thought of the chairs, then someone needs them. Why shouldn’t it be you. If this is something you want to do and the company can accommodate your wishes – go for it! ~sandi

There is absolutely nothing to be embarrassed about being carried when you opt for it.These are facilities made available for enthusiasts like you. ~inquest

I stopped half way up some mountain in Jordan. I was in my 30’s. If I could of had a ‘chair’ ride. I would of taken it in an instant! Plenty of times at the end of a day I’m begging to be given a lift. I for one would not think any less of someone getting a bit of help. ~MissGreen

And I just love docklang’s offering of thanks for the kind replies:

Thanks for not making this question seem silly!! I was afraid some snarky youngster would tell me to stay at home!

Perhaps the only thing more rare than seeing a gorilla in the wild is finding a 20+ post thread wherein a group of travelers respond in unanimous agreement to a posed question.

Well done Fodorites. Well done indeed.

And a special “Thank you” to inquest for sharing Carolyn’s Travel Stories blog, in which Carolyn describes her own Gorilla trek and use of the sedan chair – and takes some remarkable pictures along the way. In fact, if you enjoy general travel blogs – as opposed to miles and points blogs – Carolyn’s is delightful.

Gorilla trekking has now been dutifully added to my bucket list – it looks and sounds absolutely amazing.

Read the thread in its entirety: Embarrassing question about gorilla tracking

Image: “Berggorillas – Bwindi-Nationalpark” by Andrea Schieber. CC BY 2.0.

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