Wednesday, October 20, 2010

Egypt to Sudan

So today we arrived in Wadi Halfa, Sudan. Still hot as ever, still sweating like mad in the 40 degrees plus heat. First impressions are of a very friendly relaxed town.

We have come from Aswan in Southern Egypt by way of a long and crowded ferry. The bikes arrive either tomorrow or Thursday on a separate barge. Our last days in Egypt were spent sorting out official paperwork. First we had to get new number plates fabricated. This was due to the fact that the Alexandria port only issued one plate, and they require two in Aswan. The choice was either to seek a police report saying that one plate was lost/stolen, or make new plates, an easy task given that they are only painted in the first place. Seems an absurd thing to have to do, but this is Egypt and the later option saved us much hassle. The next day we set off for the traffic court, to obtain a slip of paper stating that we had not committed any driving offences. As expected this was a typical Egyptian Beurecratic nightmare, coming in at initially four hours, after which we realised all the slips had been handed out to the wrong people, with various numbers mixed up. The smile grin and bear approach followed with another two hours of waiting in the court office making small talk with the court chief and we finally managed some progress. Then it was back down to the Nile river ferry company to buy the tickets.

As for the ferry itself, certainly a hive of activity. It only runs weekly, and serves as the main way for the Sudanese to get all there supplies from Egypt. We saw all sorts of things dragged onto the ferry including a stack of dated 14 inch TV’s and kitchen sinks.

So far on the trip, the bike has been running well, especially given the 60,000 miles on the clock. Most of us did oil changes in Luxor/Aswan. I did manage to drop mine in the campsite in Luxor, breaking the rear right indicator. Didn’t really need that anyway! Also smashed my right rear vision mirror trying to man handle the bike into position on the back of the very full barge. Oh well.

From Wadi Halfa we head through the Nubian dessert to Abu Hamed and onto Khartoum, where Neil needs to get his Ethiopian visa. We’ve heard various reports about the route, all of which seem to be a bit vague. Tune in again soon.

1 comment:

  1. Hi Cam & co! What can I say other than that you've certainly got sisu (ask Assi what that means). You all seem quite ok, still. And you're right, those ferry circumstances or the heat wouldn't certainly be for me or Lauri, for sure. Btw Lauri is heading off to Saariselkä, Lapland today, where they've got snow already. I bet he's taking the skis with him. Bye for now and say hi to all your mates. Regards Iiris & Rosa