After having popped the news that we have arrived at our destination the whole adventure feeling is a bit lost. We know for the coming month where we will sleep, wake up and have our car safely parked. There is wifi and electricity mostly 24 hours a day and the toilet actually flushes properly! As matter of fact, our apartment even gets cleaned every week! Clean linen and towels and about a million tv channels. A garden with green grass and the thing I missed most was having a couch to hang on in the evening. Luxury that I got used to and bored of after a couple of days again. I get homesick (can you say that?) of traveling just looking at the pictures and video’s that I am editing for the website. I am ready for the road again but there are still many things to do before we will leave.
First things first. There are so many stories to tell since our last story that was written when we just arrived in Cameroon. It seems ages ago! There is probably too much to tell for anyone the is just reading a blog, therefore I think it will be a good idea to cut up the story in multiple chapters. Lets start with Cameroon and work our way down the coast.
Cameroon - Ekang
We were in euphoria and confusion whether we actually entered the country or not. Prepared by other stories we packed for 2 weeks of camping here. Only after 3 hours we crossed the immigration post at the other side of the little bridge running over a gorge. This was so far the most stunning geographical border crossing we have done in our trip. By the time we pass and come at the customs office further down the road, it started getting dark and raining with buckets at a time. This was our first tropical rain and man were we happy when the customs lady said we could camp out back of the office. We agreed on doing the whole customs process the next morning to save out on working with flashlights and finding stamps in the dark.
Changing the shocks in Benin we noticed one of the front springs was snapped, so we bought a new set driving through Nigeria in Benin city. So I changed them in Buea and it was obvious that these were way too short, we were driving on the rubber bump stops now. Every little stone was felt in your spine I can tell you. On the way to the capitol Yaounde we had a look in Douala to find a new replacement. Having the original with me now, made it a lot easier. It was quite obvious now how hard it was to find the right one as we had to leave the parts market and pull one off of a wreck.
We arrived late at the Presbyterian church mission guest house, but what a place! We entered the city in the dark and the traffic was everywhere. It took us 2 hours to get into the city and arriving at this place was an escape from the city. There was green grass, big trees and it was quiet as we were the only campers. We knew straight away we were going to stay here a while. The next day we applied for the Gabon visa, but they sent us away with a list of documents and papers they demanded. It was a big list to copy so we decided to give the Congo visa a shot first. This was a lot easier but very time consuming as they said it would take 7 working days. This meant we would have to stay in Yaounde for 2 weeks if we wanted to do both applications! Of course there was an express application for double the price, which was ridiculous but for us still cheaper than staying 2 weeks. We would be able to pick them up after 3 working days, which was a lot more reasonable as would then be able to leave a lot faster. Coming back to the guest house, who do we see there? It was the first tour bus again! They were camping there for a few nights, this meant we would have a bit company again. Great to spend some time with other travelers. This group had a great blend of young people, from English to Icelandic and Canadian to Australian.