On leaving Kenya we took a bit of a roundabout route to look at some birds, unfortunately this involved taking a number of small roads (dirt tracks) and getting lost, as in other places you ask a number of people the way and they all tell you to carry on. Lying wotsits.
At one point on our way back to the main road it started to hammer down with rain, as the road was a bit iffy with all the water on it we waited a while. As we were sitting there waiting we could see the water building up in the gullies either side of the road, forming torrents. These dirt roads have a steep camber on either side, so the road itself is a big hump in between two ditches.
Once the rain abated a bit we carried on, going down one hill the car started sliding sideways into the gulley, I managed to aim up the camber only to start sliding down the other side, after we had been slithering left and right down the slope, a while and fighting like mad to stay on the hump I managed to let go of the wheel for half a second to get into four wheel drive, which stabilised us a bit.
After negotiating this slalom for a way, we got on to some flatter stuff and easier to drive, I started saying to my navigator “that was a bit of fun” only to realise she was frozen with shock, fear or something, she did not speak for the best part of an hour……………..I might go back there.
And to top it all the birding was not that good, certainly not worth the terror that Helen went through. Mind you I cannot help thinking if she had navigated me to the right road, we would not have been lost, and she would have not been terrified.
Needless to say we did not leave Kenya as per plan. So the next day we set off for the border, some 5k/3miles out there was a queue of lorries waiting, I am not African but I have started picking up a few of their driving habits, when there is a queue just drive round it, so on the other side of the road I go and carry on, until we come to a of lorries that have already done that, until they met a row of trucks coming the other way, total blockage. But I can get round them by putting two wheels on the edge of the road and the other two down the bank, we are leaning to one side quite a bit but not enough to warrant the language my navigator was using, and the kittens, why do we to have kittens at a time like this, even with this inventive piece of driving we come to a stop with yet more traffic.
At some point in time a lorry driver was robbed, and it would seem he was not moving his truck until the police, press and TV crews had turned up. Most of them were there by the time we got arrived, and it was all this that was causing the chaos. I was investigating ways to try and get through, when I spotted a minibus going across the fields, by the time I got back to the car two more minibuses were ploughing through the mire, and I was in hot pursuit unfortunately they got stuck in the mud and needed the passengers to get out and push, luckily I have fat tyres and four wheel drive, so a bit of weaving in and out, and through a bush, up the embankment, through a gap in the trucks to the right side of the road and down to the frontier and immigration. Driving in England will never be the same again.
If we had left yesterday we would have missed all this, but now we have gone, we are all visa’d up, passports stamped, carnet stamped and we are in Uganda.