How Unathi prays before Kilimanjaro climb

Unathi Msengana
File picture: Eugene Coetzee

Ever wondered what kind of prayer a person says before he or she attempts to summit Africa’s tallest mountain? Here Unathi Msengana should give you an idea!

In an interview just a few days before the quest to conquer Mount Kilimanjaro begins for the Idols SA judge‚ she shared her state of mind‚ her fears and her current prayer.

“People say you can’t conquer the mountain‚ she allows you to summit.

“So I’m prepared as I can ever be for whatever the mountain feels that I should receive.

“Here‚ I’ve been praying to God to speak to that mountain‚” she laughed, before offering a brief version of her prayer.

“God‚ tell that woman there . . . how beautiful and majestic she is. [Tell her] There’s a humble village girl‚ who is coming all the way from SA. She just wants to have a good experience‚ a respectful one . . . I respect her.

“Can she just allow me to summit?

“God‚ please speak to your girl . . . Tell her we are in the same WhatsApp group‚ please God.”

The Sonini hitmaker explained she was as prepared as one could be before attempting to summit the 5 895m mountain, but that didn’t stop the nerves.

“I’m nervous‚ it’s a huge task. A wonderful experience [to look forward to] and an enormous campaign.

“I think I’m just taking it all in‚ I am not taking anything for granted.

“I think when I am asked to do something like this‚ I always kind of put the initiatives first. Then I fall in love with that‚ I fall in love with the idea of uniting Africa physically.

“Then I remember‚ ‘Girl‚ you are going on a nine-day walking hike . . . three hours a day!’ ”

Msengana said she was not oblivious to the reality of falling sick or possibly dying on the mountain, and had even had the talk with her children.

“I’ve even had the medic team speak to my kids. [The danger associated with such a journey] is something I take very seriously.

“So I’ve had this conversation with them. I also spoke to my psychologist and have been in counsel with people who have climbed the mountain.”

The musician said she was advised to listen to her body and to curb her competitiveness‚ so that when she was told to slow down or if told to go back she listened.

She said she was looking forward to quiet moments, where she could have uninterrupted conversations with God and long hours of introspection above the clouds.

“I’m very aware of the fact that I have nothing to prove and if I don’t summit, that is all in God’s will‚” she said.

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