Monday, 2 June 2008

23rd May 08

Date: 22nd May 08

Location: Matadi, DRC

Weather: Clear blue skies to start, clouded over then clear night, temp is dropping as we head south though, only 27°c today!

Status: Really damn happy with the progress we’ve made today. Colonel in need of running repairs; punctured tyre and bonnet fastener needs tightening.

Up at the crack of damn as we have the first of the big pushes today to get into Angola and as far south as possible. Hit the road out of the city, paid the toll road again and retraced the 80kms back to the junction at Sorongolo where the good tarmac ends and the fun of the dirt road begins.

Arrived at the border and did the usual formalities to get out of the country, then the usual to get into Angola except this time the language has changed to Portuguese which made everything that little bit more complicated….well its basically Spanish so the few words we had worked! Got on so well with the official who stamped our carnet for us that after we’d finished he even led me to his food store and gave me 6 tangerines for the trip ahead!

The road varied from graded gravel/sand to shot-to-pieces tarmac which slowed the pace every time we hit a section but by the time the sun went down we’d managed to cover 380kms and were just short of out target town of N’zeto when the first police stop halted our progress.

A bunch of drunk, lie could hardly stand cops talking quickly in Portuguese wasn’t too easy to deal with so when they decided to have a meeting together at the edge of the road we decided to hit the accelerators and drove out of the town as fast as we could. There was no way that one was going to end any other way but with problems, sometimes you just have to do it!

Using another preorganised waypoint we made our way 15kms down the coast and pulled onto a track which ran for another km before dropping down onto the beach with the Atlantic waves crashing onto the shore right by the entrances to our tents, perfect.

End of day location: N’zeto, Angola

Distance covered: 389kms

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