”The North to South Challenge”. Update Day 5
After driving 104 hours, 22 min., and 7700 km there is a reason to give you all an update. The past 24 hours of our trip cost us most time for planning, spending money and gaining more grey hair. We have been flying with the car, crossed countries and areas where friendship and happiness is on top of the daily agenda.
Because of the political situation in Syria and Libya we were forced to fly and, as we mentioned earlier, inaccurate logistic was provided by DG Schenker and Turkish Airlines. Without support of Serdar Aker and UPS, our expedition would have been over in Istanbul. We were booked on a flight the 6th of May 2014 instead of 2015. Then we tried to reach a flight on the 5th of May 2015 but that one got cancelled and we were moved to a departure on the 7th of May, which would have set us under big pressure in Africa. But believe it or not, this flight got cancelled as well. And that is why the departure with UPS on May, 6th saved us.
Besides that, we struggled during past 3-4 month to get a permission to enter Egypt due to two reasons: our car is a 4×4 and is not welcome in Egypt. So, right now we own Cayenne 2×4, only one in the world and funny enough, when we’ll pass the border of Sudan, it’ll convert to 4×4 again. Also we were forced to get Egyptian number plates for the car. Another really big part of our challenge is safety; that is the reason why we are accompanied by one or two cars in the front and back. And the guys sitting in these cars are not the ones you would think of inviting for a cup of coffee at your place. Right now we are driving down from Suez channel, which means that the biggest challenge of our trip has past us. Now, driving down to the South means Africa and in our eyes the real adventure starts. At the moment we are 8-10 hours ahead of our original time schedule, but that can be quickly changed. At the Egyptian border, where we have been asked to show our passports for at least 25 times and take the whole car apart and build it together again, we missed two hours. The customs officers were very interested in our Salomon gear, but we got a permission to continue. At the same time one of the officers lost a wheel at the side of the car and made a dent.
We know that it has been rather quiet for a last few days. Since we got the information about the flight situation, we were simply busy in finding solutions, as the alternative was just to give up. Besides that, the drive throughout Europe didn’t give us many challenges, but we are sure to get them now in Africa. Last but not least, the modern technology is not really developed in this part of the world, which makes it difficult for us to send high resolution pictures.
That’s a wrap for this time, but we hope to get back with more information soon. Wish us luck, we need it.