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Wednesday, 19 April 2017

Finally civilisation - Cape Town

I generally only work in places that are having a really rough time. Locations with famine, poverty and war, or a combination are where I get to visit.

Very occasionally, and I mean very very occasionally, I get to go somewhere decent, and my last work trip was one of my favourite places anywhere, Cape Town! As an added bonus my brother lives there, so I have free accommodation, some company and two hyper excited Italian Greyhounds to play with.

Saturday, 24 December 2016

Taking my Brompton to Malawi

After just a few weeks home after my Namibia trip, it was time for another work trip. Back to Malawi again for a few weeks.

Saturday, 19 November 2016

Taking my folding bike to Namibia

I travel a lot for work, mostly in Southern Africa, particularly if there's been a drought or some political problems. This time I was off to Namibia for another trip. When there I usually spend time walking around the city, but this time I decided to take my Brompton folding bike along so I could explore even more.

This meant I had an issue. I wanted to be able to cycle straight from the airport, so I wouldn't need expensive taxis that speed and scare the living daylights out of me, but I also wanted my bicycle to be safe in the hands of the luggage demolition crew. A strong cardboard box would work, but I wouldn't be able to cycle with a box that size, and it would likely get tossed or taken if I tried to leave it near the airport.

So having previously built a battery box for my electric bike out of ABS plastic, I decided this would do the job again. 

Tuesday, 23 August 2016

More of our Munich to Vienna trip


Considering how amazing this trip was, I thought it deserves at least a few more photos, so here you go.

French fries were invented in... Belgium, so we had to have some as a snack. The standard accompaniment is Mayonnaise here. This picture was taken after 9pm, I really love the late hours of sunlight!

Tuesday, 16 August 2016

Cycling from Munich to Vienna on our Brompton folding bikes

My darling wife (who edits these posts) and I are the true definition of opposites attract. However a passion that we both share is our love of travel. Our ultimate dream is to live on a comfortable boat, sailing anywhere our fancy takes us. Unfortunately, we live in a country that is terribly corrupt and hence our currency isn't worth much. Not to mention that comfortable boats are known to be huge money holes, so that dream may have to wait a while.

Fortunately, we also really like bicycles, so if we didn't want to spend a fortune, we could travel by bicycle instead. Recently we embarked on out first biking adventure, not knowing if we would like it. Well we didn't like it, we loved it! In fact I'm now more excited to do bike traveling than I am to do boat traveling!

Monday, 19 December 2011

Malawi, watch out for the hawkers

Weather: fantastic.
Location: Blantyre – busy, Lilongwe – sparce, the lake – now we’re talking!
Company: Locals – pushy, foreigners – infected.
Affordability: Cheap, but the allowance sucks enough to make up for that.
Highlight: Feeding fish eagles.
Lowlight: Bilhazia.

I’ve been to Malawi a lot. In fact at one stage I used to do all my rice shopping for in Malawi. They have the best rice, I can recommend the Kilombero aromatic rice brand, it's delicious.

On my first trip to Malawi I was travelling with a cool Norwegian guy named Stein. He is a big viking of a man.

Wednesday, 31 May 2000

My very first overseas trip, Belgium and Holland

Season: Spring.
Weather: Chilly.
Location: Brussels – chocolatey, Antwerp – funky, Amsterdam – eye opening
Company: Locals – regimented, foreigners fun.
Affordability: Can’t say, everything was paid for.
Highlight: Tormenting our Belgian handlers on a daily basis.
Lowlight: Brussels, apart from the center square, I just don’t see the point of it. It’s like an experiment to see if you can bore someone to death.
 
I originally wrote this many years ago, but thought it was worth a mildly edited repost here.
 
This is all about my first trip to Europe, in May 2000. I’d been out of the country before, but never to a place that required a flight. Being a poor student at the time there was no way I could have managed this trip on my own budget, so fortunately for myself and a young miss Winnie Zwane, we were sponsored by the Belgium group of Katholieke Studenten Jeugd, a Belgian youth movement, supposedly related to the catholic church, but in reality not at all. Winnie and myself were on the NEC (National executive committee) of the Association of Catholic Tertiary Students (ACTS) and were therefore a fairly logical link for the KSJ guys in South Africa. So KSJ would pay for us to go join them on a youth conference called WorldShake. Then in a few months they would all fly out to come explore South Africa.