14 messages :: read>
Yes, it was only yesterday, but I'm having real trouble remembering what happened and which country I was in!
OK, lets work back. We're currently in Jordan heading down the '15' to Ma'an, although you already probably know that from the excellent Yellowbrick tracking system fitted to the roof of our Land Rover. From all the emails and texts we've been receiving, I think the Yellowbrick really has been the making of this project as far as communicating back home is concerned. We've got our Iridium satellite phone also mounted on the roof and this is how you're receiving emails and photos. It works well in this role, but as a vehicle-mounted satellite phone to talk to people, it is nigh on useless! In order to actually make a call where both parties can clearly converse with each other, we would have to stop and switch off the engine - hardly what I call a mobile system. We unfortunately didn't have much choice with the system we are using, as due to our route going the full length of Africa and almost the full length of Europe, there is no other system that can provide such coverage.
Getting a touch side-tracked there, where was I?
Jordan at the moment and 34C on an undulating and pot holed motorway currently driving at 105kph. The sun is beating down on the dark blue bonnet, lighting up the Max Adventure logo which takes centre stage and is surrounded by 13 of the country flags that we have already ticked off.
We cleared through the Syria / Jordan border with relative ease. Having carried out a reconnaissance trip to Jeddah last year, I mapped out every border crossing with detailed notes of the Customs & Immigration procedure, with diagrams of the location of all the relevant buildings. This shaved a valuable 40 minutes off our original crossing time and took it down to 1 hour 40 minutes to complete the necessary transfer from one country to another.
With the temperature in the mid 30's, we are all grateful to the fact that we are wearing Paramo clothing. It is keeping us warm when we needed it in a damp and drizzly Europe and now cool under the baking heat of an Arabian sun. Like the incredibly versatile Land Rover Discovery that we are driving, it really is the most versatile clothing there is for such an overland adventure. Considering that we have been cooped up in this vehicle for 60 hours now without a break, we are still smelling fresh - also down to the Byoshower travel wash that we are using. The two products compliment each other well.
Syria was an all-night affair, dropping off the massive escarpment that separates it from Turkey late last night, into a sea of faint lights that marked out the cities. Turkey is trying hard to be accepted into the European Union and so when travelling around Turkey or dealing with the Turks, the reception you will receive is both professional and warm - everything you would come to expect if travelling around western Europe. Syria is different though and it felt like the adventure had just started.Comments on this article
|By: Andrew Currell||When: 20th Oct 2010 09:27|
Andrew from Mandela Rhodes Place, Cape Town here - following your progress hourly -and its driving my family nuts!
please can we had an update on the ferry - are you there early and being forced to wait, or did you miss it?? the suspense is KILLING me!!
|By: Tina Mac||When: 20th Oct 2010 08:32|
l really enjoyed your article on the water situation Andrew. It's so interesting to hear how you are coping from day to day. I hope you'll all be able to catch up with sleep on the Ferry. You're doing a grand job for a great cause & I'm very proud of you all. xm
|By: Paul RAC||When: 19th Oct 2010 23:14|
Finally caught up with all the photos, videos & blogs tonight.. great stuff ! Entry into Saudi sounded like a breeze ..persistence & not giving up paid off. You should have the Ethiopia letter (no more feedback since Mon. so assume carnet holder got in) via Steve by now so trust ferry crossing goes ok. On call 24/7 if required. Go guys !!!
|By: Wayne Ball||When: 19th Oct 2010 22:55|
Keep it up guys you can do it. Next time catch a bus. All the best
|By: Brian Service||When: 19th Oct 2010 22:26|
Looks like you are making good progress. I am following you very closely and hoping my old car holds up! It brings back many happy memories and makes me very happy as it's supporting a good cause. I hope it doesn't smell too much of our Black Labrador, Tessie in the back? She spent many hours in there, like yourselves, although she probably got more sleep! Good luck.
|By: Maurice Allen.||When: 19th Oct 2010 22:06|
Hi,team followin your progress with great interest.Congratulations on getting into Saudi.Good luck with the ferry. Wish I was there.Maurice.
|By: Kathy & Tina||When: 19th Oct 2010 21:46|
So glad you got into Saudi ok. We're all very excited in Dalwood (Devon) - including the local School. Hope you'll be able to give them a Talk later in the Year! Good luck with the ferry. Hope you'll have time to stretch your legs. We're enjoying the updates & pictures. Love Kathy & Mumxxx
|By: Peter Crichton||When: 19th Oct 2010 20:11|
Fantastic outcome at the KSA border. Well done. One comment on the ferry tomorrow - dont eat the food aboard. There is no choice anyway. Try for a hot Sharwarma at a stall in the port - it's much safer! Good crossing, Peter
|By: Ann and H Thompson||When: 19th Oct 2010 16:49|
Tina has told us all about the expedition. We are following your progress and it looks great, exciting and tough. Best wishes from a showery Ottery St Mary in Devon.
|By: Jo Wells||When: 19th Oct 2010 16:15|
Talking of adventures.... I think you are missing a trick Mac, why not do an Indiana Jones style leap on top of the Disco and phone home... PS. The nerdy geographers back at the Society are loving the map! Great going, all the best. Jo
|By: Rod More O'Ferrall||When: 19th Oct 2010 15:38|
I'm facinated by this whole trip. I'm starting the very same same journey route later this week to deliver a Land Rover Defender to a remote Maasai community in SW Kenya. Will take it a bit slower though. Good luck with record attempt. I'll keep watching to pick up any tips for the trip.
|By: Sam Rutherford||When: 19th Oct 2010 14:55|
Good job guys, keep it safe!
|By: Clare||When: 19th Oct 2010 14:31|
wow - as I write it looks as though you may be crossing into Saudi - hope those visa work ok after all the trouble you had.What time is the ferry? You'll be glad of 8 hours not driving I bet. rnPS nice bit of live product testing marketing, your sponsors will be proud!
|By: Rob chris bro||When: 19th Oct 2010 14:08|
hey guys I haven't got ur sat # so I hope you get this, I have been tracking you all the way you guys are doing a grand job. and I wish you all the success and I know you'll make it. I look forward to celebrating with you here in Australia.