Goodbye James and heading South toward Kenya

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Africa » Ethiopia
February 8th 2020
Published: February 9th 2020
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We were up early to go and see some more of the amazing churches in Lalibela cut into the rocks. We had a little trouble finding it as we think all the guides take down the signs so you have to pay them for their services. Anyway we eventually found a way in and it was a great labyrinth of caves. I’m not entirely sure we should have gone down all the tunnels we found, but the lack of any signs worked in our favour and we had a great time exploring 1000 year old tunnels.

Eventually we headed back to the truck and drove James to Lalibela airport, which was rather small but did have a café and restaurant to keep James occupied as he waited to fly to Addis and then back home to London. I (hope) he had a great time and he said it won’t be the same driving round Milton Keynes wondering if a goat, camel, donkey, child, tyre or explosion is around the corner.

Alain and I got back in the truck and started heading south, we have one week to get to Nairobi before Kate, Ben and Zac arrive at the airport for their time in Nelly. The good news is the road was Tarmac, the bad news was that it seemed to have car sized potholes in it which made driving a little slower.

We knew that fuel in Ethiopia can be a little hard to find at times as it is all trucked in from other countries. Sometimes all the fuel stations in a town have no fuel, sometimes only one does (at which point it is a riot trying to get to the fuel station). We were running low on fuel and all attempts to stop had failed but we lucked out and found one with fuel and only had to que (a loose term) for 20 minutes to get some. We hope we don’t have to repeat this.

Soon however the landscape changed and we entered desert. The road improved but so did the crazy camels running into the road. On one occasion we did well to avoid a truck as it swerved to avoid a camel. We got some real miles under our belt and made for a place called Gewane. Along the way we saw what happens when a truck hits a Donkey at 60mph, in short the inside ends up on the outside. Sorry, no photo.

We made it to Gewane which is a small town on the primary goods shipping artery of Ethiopia. Put another way Gewane is a truck stop in the middle of the desert. We were a little nervous of finding a place to stay that was safe, but we were in luck as a new hotel behind gates had been built and the owner was only too glad to welcome us (as long as we stayed on the quiet so he didn’t have to pay taxes).

We managed to find some surprisingly good food at the restaurant come bar come truck station and then retreated to bed.

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