Fancy meeting you here…
Added on Tuesday, June 14th, 2011 by Carole Nash Editor
Fancy meeting you here...
Divava Lodge was our target for the end of the next days’ ride, at Divundu. The track was running right alongside the Okavango River, with all the hustle and bustle of life that the river brings with it. Miles and miles of small villages, cattle farmers, children going to school, cyclists on bikes that have seen better days, goats, wild dogs – just people living their lives, getting on with it. The river is their lifeline.
It was lovely to watch it all happening before you, the bike sort of makes you a part of it – unlike a 4×4, where you’re just looking down on it, protected by your own metal world. Occasionally I’d stop and just chat to some local people. We found a shebeen (an illicit drinking place) – so had a cold drink and a bit of socializing with some locals before moving on.
I caught up with Billy who was fixing one of the guys’ punctures – his 3rd of the day! He was riding two up – which seems to have made all the difference to the frequency of punctures. The great thing about the tubeless tyres was a puncture was a quick fix – literally just five minutes and you’re off again. We had lots of puncture kits and air cartridges from our friends at Touratech. The kit comprised of a cleaning spike to roughen up the hole, some very sticky goo and a tool for sliding in the gooey rubberized plug (technical term!). They worked instantly and if the hole was too big, we just banged another one in! Neat!
Chasing along the Okavango sandy gravel track was actually optional. There was a parallel tarmac road about five kilometres south and there were various points along the way to escape to it. This was nice to have as an option but at the same time, it meant you missed all the eye candy of normal local life along the river.
On arrival at Divundu, one of our clients – Jayson – met his mates from the UK. What a place to just meet up with a gang of mates! How small is our world? They were doing a similar adventure but in Land rovers, driving all the way from East London. We chatted for a long time, they had some great stories to tell and there was a definite bonding of like minded people going on. Shame we were heading in opposite directions as I think we could have had a great night at the bar! We said our goodbyes and continued on to the lodge. We all had a late night that night – more dancers, more food, wine and beer – and some exaggerated tales of this and that! Another great day at the office I thought.