Tour d'Afrique: Cairo - Departure Imminent

Trip Start Jan 15, 2010
Trip End May 15, 2010

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Flag of Egypt  , Al Qahirah,
Wednesday, January 13, 2010

The riders have gathered in Cairo for the 8th annual Tour d'Afrique - a philanthropic cycling challenge from Cairo to Cape Town. We will cover 12,000 hard and challenging kilometres in four months.

I am one of them and my nerves are frayed, I now have had those sick butterflies in my tummy for a week or so now and to say I was nervous was an understatement!! Excited? Hell yeah I am excited...this is an opportunity of a lifetime, an adventure that I have dreamt about. Well I am on my way, well nearly.

My fellow riders seem interesting - from all over the world. Brits, Australians, Americans, Canadians.....but most impressive is two Norweigan guys who have riden their bikes to the start of the race! Yeap hard core!! I am feeling that my fellow comrades are not just "bike heads", but really "serious competitive bike heads" . Most have raced at some stage of their lives, some have custom built bikes for this race, but most bewildering of all is listening to them speak this universal bike talk...comparing parts, tires, stems,seat posts, cranks, levers etc. My eyes do glaze over......these people are passionate and enthusiastic!!

So far all I have met are keen to get the EFI title. EFI stands for Every F*cking Inch of the event. Most will race, some won't....Lil' ol me well I will be happy if I make it to Cape Town!!

We have two days of Rider briefings, a ride to the Sakkara Pyramids and then we head via police escort and convoy and police to the Giza Pyramids where we will start the race and head south towards Luxor. Say some prayers for us, these Egyptians have very few road rules!!
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Ian Lancaster on

Chairman Mao correctly said of the 3,000 mile Long March that helped him evade and then overcome a superior opposing force, "Every Journey begins with the first small step"......the mind works best if it focuses on the daily task and is not overwhelmed by the totality of the journey.

Great experience and a life time of stories to tell
Best wishes and look forward to reading the blog


Colm O'Leary on

An Irish Blessing :
May the road rise to meet you.
May the wind be always at your back.
May the sun shine warm upon your face.
And rains fall soft upon your fields.
And until we meet again,
May God hold you in the hollow of His hand.

b pavey on

Ha! Don't worry about those nutty bikeheads. No doubt they will come unstuck with sprockets and widgets flying off their fancy machines while you chunk along uneventfully through to the finish line! Best of luck, and enjoy--
--bp, muzz and orson

Alice on

Have been thinking of you lots! You are absolutely amazing and a total inspiration! Just soak it all up and enjoy it all the way!!!

Helen on

Hi Annalise, hope you are soaking up every moment of such an amazing experience. have been thinking of you lots as you cycle your little heart out!Best of luck and keep on smiling!xxx

LIsa Spence on

Hi Annalise...
where and how are you!!?? Looking for a sign....hopefully you are feeling our signs of love along the way!
Lis x

Sarah Unmack on

Annaliese - you are AMAZING! mum told me about your trip and Pia sent me your blogsite. I just wanted to pass on my love and best wishes and say I am jealous as hell this sounds like my kind of adventure!!!! I can't vouch for Sudan or Ethiopia - but have done the rest of your journey starting at Nairobi some years ago ( not on a bike mind you!) and the people and places you will meet and see along the way will truly inspire. Watch out for elephants on the road in Botswana and have the time of your life, I cant wait to hear all about it! xxx

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