So yeah, I kinda left off in the middle of the story and then started another road trip. What can I say, I’m a terrible blogger. Anyway. So Day 4 we make it into Guinea. Guinea was awesome. The roads were better, they were worn and had character. They weren’t some newly cut trail made by the UN that washed out every 3 days, they had grooves worn smooth by thousands of vehicles. It was a lot of fun to drive on. Then we got to the paved road, which even had a shoulder, and I made the mistake of taking this picture. The guard at the check point saw me and got really upset, but by the time he walked up to me I now had the GPS out, so I told him it was a GPS. Then Jeff took over in french and we spent the next hour trying to explain what a GPS does, and then explaining that we weren’t spying out the location of their bridges. I wanted Jeff to tell them about Google Earth, and that we already know where everything in the world is, but I didn’t think that’d be wise. So after a while we were allowed to go, but it was quite an ordeal. They even pulled the “In your country you don’t go around taking pictures of things” line, which we can’t stand, because America is free country, and as long as your not on a military base, you can take pictures of anything and anyone.
We got to Nzerekore and spent the night in the Hotel Bakoly. Jeff and I went to the market and bought some vegetables and then the nice lady at the hotel whipped up an amazing salad. We all ate it and felt great. I also discovered a crack in the frame of the cargo rack of my bike. So we took it to the local welding shop where they stuck a piece of rebar into the hallow tube frame and welded it all back together, stronger then over.
On the way out of Guinea we had some of the most amazing driving ever. The road was windy, up and down, no gravel, and best of all, there were no villages along the way to make you slow down. It was awesome. I crouched down low, and gassed it. I was flying around corners as fast as I could. Then, I got passed by a Guinean cyclist. I tried to keep up, but couldn’t. Then, 10 minutes later, I got passed again, and this time, by a guy who had a passenger. So much for my awesome driving skills.
Right at 5 we pull into Liberia. We got stopped by immigration because I didn’t have my yellow fever card. I’ve been in and out of countries in Africa 7 or so times and have never been asked for it, now the one time I forgot it, I’m asked for it. We told the immigration officer that we wouldn’t have residency permits if we didn’t have yellow fever vaccines and after a while they let us pass.
We spent the night in Ganta and had dinner at the legendary restaurant, Abudja. As usual it was delicious. We then spent the night in some guest house that had DSTV. We watched a wonderful National Geographic show on poisonous animals and talked about how we’d be screwed if we got bit by a snake in Liberia. I’m told that all the anti-venom in the country is in some hospital in Sinoe or Maryland, and we weren’t driving near those counties.
The next day we headed to Buchanan along the rail road from Yekepah. It started off as a wonderful drive, but got more and more… what’s the word… developed. Wide roads, they got smooth, traffic even. It was just lame. The upshot is that we went through 3 counties in Liberia and only stopped at one check point. Compare this to my European vacation where we drove through 5 countries and were stopped at, well, there were no check points.
In Buchanan we visited DJ Bob who had just moved the world famous club “Black and White” form Harper to Buchanan. As always the place was looking good and Bob’s remixes were the delight of the evening. We even got a tour of the place by Mrs. Bob. Which included their stash of 90’s arcade games. I was very excited to see that shooter game “Maximum Force”. I love that game.
The next morning we easily crused into Monrovia. Both tires on my bike were terribly out of round and I needed an oil change, but life was good, and we were alive. Next I’ll finish the European road trip, but first I need to finish uploading all the pictures, and now that I’m back in Liberia, that’ll take the rest of the week and then some.