Well, things have certainly changed. I've got friends! I met up with Pat/Christina and Tom again (I saw them in St. Lucia) and spent two days in Cape Town with them couch surfing. I'd not really heard of this before but Tom's been doing it for years. People who are happy to have guests/travellers stay with them advertise on the internet and Tom got in touch with a couple in Cape Town who were only too pleased to have us all stay. Whilst we were there Daryll and Angela turned up. Daryll and Angela are a Canadian couple who started in Canada at roughly the same time as me and have just flown their bikes over from Argentina. We're all heading the same way so I've got company for a while.
|Pat and Chris - French Canadian - Africa Twin - going to Europe|
|Tom - USA - V-strom - going to Europe|
Daryll and Angela had a few things to do in Cape Town so the four of us set off ahead of them up the western coast of South Africa towards Namibia. It was really good fun to be riding with other people for a change and it makes the accommodation so much cheaper! The down side is that I don't have much spare time to write up my blog and have no idea when or where the internet will appear again so my weekly (long) reports may become shorter and more infrequent – but at least you know I'm having fun and not alone (if you actually cared)
This is Tom, off road in Northern South Africa. He'd actually had a spill on some oil in Cape Town and was badly bruised and it dented his confidence, so he wasn't pleased to be doing this much off road so soon. I think he's coping extremely well for a 67 year old! You're never to old to ride the world.
This part of South Africa is true rocky desert and as we moved closer to Namibia I could tell we were heading into something vast and untamed. I've wanted to go to Namibia ever since 1991 when I read a book on Elephants in the desert. It was the first time I'd heard of this country and the idea that Elephants live in the desert is astonishing. I'm sure I won't see any but I'm really looking forward to the desert and the wonderful night skies.
Somewhere on the road out of Cape Town I pasted a milestone. By the end of the day I'd covered a total of 24, 910 miles since starting off in Anchorage on 27th July last year. The distance around the equator is 24, 901 so I've been around the world. Won't mean anything to you but for me that's quite something, and it's given me a better idea of how large this rock is that we all live on.
Whilst in Cape Town I got the bike serviced. Here are the details:
New tyres Anakee 2 Rear £145
Fitting tyres £25
Fuel pump electrical relay £150
Changed alternator belt £28
New gear box oil £4
New engine oil £20
New drive oil £4
This included checking and cleaning sparks, air filter, all loose nuts and bolts.
Total cost was about £650.
Finally, I'm feeling a little sick at the moment. I've had a sharp head ache for about a week now and and getting a bit of a temperature. Nothing serious yet but it's reminded me how well I've actually been in the last 9 months. So I you're reading this and in good health and feeling fine – enjoy it.
That's all I'm afraid. I'm in an internet shop that is charging me £10 an hour so there aren't many pictures this week. This might be the way it goes in the next three months. We're crossing into Namibia tomorrow (saturday) and heading for Fish Rive Canyon (Africa's Grand Canyon) then to Luderitz on the coast to search or some diamonds.