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I come around a bush, and there is the pool… Except there’s a naked local woman in it, bathing, waist-deep in the water. She pauses scrubbing herself and glowers at me. Our eyes lock for a moment, both of us caught by surprise. I hastily turn around and walk back up. So, once again, I don’t have photos of the pool. If you want to see it you will just have to visit the place yourself, ey?

We need fuel. We have been assured that fuel is available in the village, but neither one of us wants to ride today. Not even a few meters. We agree to buy the fuel in containers and bring it to our bikes. But we don’t know how much we need. After a half-hour or so of separately scouting around, I am left to fuel the bikes. Akoth has a work call to make. I go to the village to a place that sells fuel at 10 litres for 2000 shillings. I need to do this quick because the sun is going down, and I must enjoy and photograph the sunset.

Finally, sunset…

Dinner today is, again, another feast worth of kings. We have conversations with the other guests (they are leaving tomorrow too) and later settle into our tents for the night. But not before Akoth spots a small brown scorpion rushing from under her tent.

Pieces of Akoth’s bike that are no longer attached to the bike.

Goodnight.


Day 8:  Friday 28th January, 2022 | Illeret to Koobi Fora

I have bad memories of Koobi Fora and Sibiloi National Park from my trip two years ago. I have always wanted to go back to exorcise those memories, and hopefully create good ones. I wanted to ride through there last year solo, but was told that the security situation in the park was not good. Today it’s all systems go. I’m excited about that, despite the lurking anxiety.

Good morning. After breakfast, we pack up to leave. While packing up my tent, I disturb the peace of another scorpion that runs out from underneath it.

Packed and ready to leave, but I’m busy watching Kevin Kamau Muchai, the building and construction technologist, giving building tips online. Two years ago you could hardly send a text message here. Today I can watch a video online.

Posting a trip update on Facebook.

A little photo session before leaving.

We stop at TBI to take some photos at the gate.

Rehydrate.

Life goes on. If you know you know…

Straightening Akoth’s handlebars.

Adjusting her clutch.

Carcass by the roadside.

We are riding the Illeret-North Horr road. We need to find the junction where we branch off and make entry into Sibiloi National Park. Like I said earlier, my traced GPS route is not helping us. We navigate by phone.

Akoth goes ahead, as usual. After a bit of riding, I slow down. We have gone too far, we should have turned into Sibiloi already. I stop to check the map, and sure enough, we missed the turn. Akoth shows up, she has also turned around. I turn around too, and we slowly make our way back, looking for the junction.

We run into a herdsman with some cows at the junction.

How did we miss the sign?

We can’t understand each other, but I figure he is asking for medicines. He is friendly, even runs around to collect sticks to put under my side stand so the bike won’t sink into the sand as I get off to take photos.

We pause, to check with each other, and confirm that we are committed to this madness. Yes, we are.

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