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As we drove down the road at 0200hrs me and Chris were quite happily going along when "QUICK BRAKE" was screamed as we were about to be wiped out by a huge artic a forty footer you ask why did we not see it, well quite simply it had no lights, well when I say none you can't count the mini Maglite cable-tied to the front bumper and the xmas fairy lights on the back, it was doing about 50 mph and either the driver was wearing night vision goggles navigating by the stars or just didn't give a tiny rats arse that he would probably be putting someone in the morgue that night . Any way after a few screams followed by laughter due to our lives still being in tact we carried on.
This has been a good one for me being a regular user, well I should say picker, I have had some memorable moments digging away in the early hours. The dust has made me create some absolute beauties and each country brings with it new colours as the dust changes from brown to red to yellow almost a rainbow of goo!! The odd one made it to the window but most were just strategically placed around the vehicle and, as Mike and Joan know, I am good at sticking them to things (good luck scraping it off your stools M and J!). Oh and Lucy MacKenney don't worry about xmas presents this year, you're getting Play Doh!!!
These are very regular and we behave but as the trip goes on you seem to find yourself doing things to brighten your day, on approach to one check point I thought it may be amusing to act the fool so I took off my trainers and knelt on the chair put my shoes on my knees and pretended to be Toulouse-Lautrec spoke in a high pitch voice and pulled my t-shirt up to look like a boob tube. After being released from custody we were on our way again (certain bits of this were fabricated for the good of my fans) one police officer asked me at the check point what is good from England we can have, so I replied Rooney is up for transfer!!!
PEEING ON FEET
Due to the heat we are drinking vast amount of water but not stopping very often and as a result when you pee it often resembles that of a race horse, so a lot, anyway one such pee stop we are on a hill and I go to the front of the Landy and turn on the tap pee pee pee pee pee! And off it went down the hill, pee pee pee pee pee and to my amusement the 6 little bare footed boys and the back were now wading in 5 litres of coke, juice, water, red bull and coffee, and to make matters worse one little lad was splashing his toes in it!!!
CHICKENS ON THE ROAD
Every town people were selling produce and as you left the town you could still buy off the road side. One of my favourites was live chickens that were held up, well obviously they have no idea about what we are doing, anyway say we did buy a chicken picture Chris in the back wearing a apron plucking away, feathers flying round in the landy, me and Andy spitting them out whilst trying to nav and drive. By now Chris would have cracked open a bottle of red (like my mum does whenever she cooks even beans on toast) and trying to make a sauce to accompany the bird, it would look like a pillow fight scene from St Trinnians ... but without the stockings well that's for you to find out later.
RATION PACKS AT NIGHT
Because our body clocks are so messed up we eat when we are hungry so we may want something 1, 2, 3 or even 4 am, but the problem is if your on 4 hr drive duty you cant pull over as it waste too much time, so what we do is feed each other sounds easy but I assure you it aint, when your doing 65 kph over bumps those bake beans will fly and you are unaware due to the darkness its not till you stop and turn the light on that you realised that there was actually quite a lot in the bag its just that most of it didn't reach you and its resting peacefully on your lap which is always amusing for the border police to look at ,again as mentioned in previous blogs",` DELLY BELLY"
MY NEAR MISS POLICE OFFICER GAME
As we soak up the miles we are constantly harassed by police check points and most just want to practice their English and rob you but very subtly by saying things like "so what would I like from England?" and "would you like to give me a gift to remember you by". Both my answers would normally be something on the lines of "haemorrhoids" but usually a couple of cigarettes did the job anyway after about 100 check points the novelty wears off and on one particular occasion I got a bit too near when coming to a halt and left a nice Pirelli tyre mark on the policeman's boots, more fags to the rescue and lots of yes sir yes sir sorry sir and with my puppy dog eyes it was an easy exit.
We are currently only 500 miles from finish and as I am going to be busy this will probably be my last blog so to sum up the trip.
Exhausting, fantastic, emotional, excitement, anger, fear, joy, friendship, team work these are the things that are in my heart as we come to the end of an epic journey and for all the different feelings I am glad I was asked to go on one of the classic overland journeys by road and this was only made possible by the fact my brother was determined to succeed and did not give up at any of the stages from planning to the trip itself and believe me there were a lot of hurdles. So I want to thank him and say thanks for being my brother "you old git", signing off for the last time.
Steve MacComments on this article
|By: Nicky Clargo||When: 10th Nov 2010 01:30|
You guys should be on stage... a really great, funny read! I've been sat here chuckling away to myself! Nicky ;o) x
|By: dan ward||When: 28th Oct 2010 18:09|
look at yoooou!!! well done the mac lads!
|By: Dave Whitmore||When: 28th Oct 2010 17:46|
|By: Colleen Buxton||When: 28th Oct 2010 15:26|
WELL DONE!!!! Really really pleased that you've all made it safely and can now relax for a bit before coming home!! Now go and have a bath somewhere!!!
|By: Joanie||When: 28th Oct 2010 10:31|
Hi Andy, Steve and Chris
|By: Mike Flexmore||When: 28th Oct 2010 10:10|
Wow guys, I see this morning that you only have about another 200 miles to go. You all must be so elated. I wish we could see you actually arriving.
I hope you remove the baked beans from your beard Steve, and ventilate the lunar capsule before you arrive...... and by the way, you can have that stool back encrusted with your bogies.
|By: Mike N||When: 28th Oct 2010 09:49|
Great job guys! Had me worried a bit last night, the live tracking was running behind, and the Bots / SA border post you used (Ramatlabama) usually closes at 8pm. But you made it! So, welcome to South Africa, enjoy your stay, relax a bit, fatten up, but please, try to beat the 10 day barrier on your way back :-)