This written in a small Appalachian town in Kentucky, USA. Life overtook me: three continents in seven days, a 16 hour long- haul flight and 6 hours jet lag caught up with me here. It’s been hard to keep in touch with Andy, made worse by the problem of finding connectivity in a rural part of Kentucky.
I do know that I’d never have survived the long off-road days of sand, gravel and more hills south of Windhoek. The ride certainly hasn’t got any easier toward the end.
The last night on the road is in Malmesbury, with a 90 km ride to the finish in Capetown on Sat 9 May where there will be a celebratory dinner in the evening.
I sense there will be a lot of mixed emotions at the end; feelings of achievement to have completed an enormously challenging undertaking, regret that friendships formed over 12000kms of Africa will be dispersed, relief that it’s safely over, and maybe some trepidation about re-entering the ‘real’ world. Many of the riders are at some point of transition in their lives and could be unsure about what their focus and direction will be after the ride. For some, re-entry into life as they left it back in January may be challenging.
Andy flies up to Johannesburg on Sunday and on to Atlanta on 12th to join me for a couple of weeks of catch-up time. We will be back in Johannesburg on 29 May.
Do not believe any rumours you might hear that he will give his bike to the first person who offers to take it off his hands.