Day 8 - GAME OVER - pikipiki stolen

Trip Start Aug 07, 2007
Trip End Nov 07, 2007

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Flag of Kenya  ,
Tuesday, August 14, 2007

...or so I thought when I got back from a spot of shopping downtown Nairobi (v un-posh) and the bike was well and truly gone.  You would have thought that 4 years in LBHF with myriad parking tickets, tows, clamps etc would have made me a bit more cautious but no.  I got towed by the City Council. 

Hair: David Beckham
Beard: David Beckham
Distance Travelled: 1150km
Frame of Mind: Relieved

In my defence (you knew it was coming) there were no signs, no wardens, no parking meters.  Why would one assume that in one of the busiest cities in Africa, with huge amounts of traffic going through it each day would require you to PAY for parking. Hmmm....

Not much of an issue.  Got them down to 100 Ksh (about a pound) fine. The main problem was that they weren't 100% carful when towing.  they cracked my front suspension seal.  This is a problem.  No parts available in NBO (searched for 6 hours yesterday).  Will have to patch it up as best as I can and cross fingers.

The other good news is I've cleared lots of the red tape that was drowning me.  I am now sorted for Ethiopia (not Sudan,or Egypt, but that can wait).  Only took 5 days.  Ace.   It involved taking a Kenyan driving test, which was hilarious and took 8 hours to complete.  V intesting system:

Everyone has the same date and time for their test.  They all (about 200) queue [line - Amy] up and register.  Takes about 2 hours.  You wait till they all finish.  They then all, in turn, do the theory component.  Takes about 3 hours.  You wait till they all finish.  They then all do the driving got it...then they all get the certificate of competency.  Then you can leave and drive into town to queue up some more for the actual licence [license].  Genius system.

I was a little lucky methinks.  Got 50% of the theory wrong, only did 2 circuits of the parking lot with my bike, got the hand signal question wrong, had illegal plates.  Was a little depressed as I would have to wait another week in NBO for another chance - but then they handed me my licence.  Ha ha!  Sometimes I love being a mzungu!

Randomly met a pilot friend of mine from Mwanza at the campsite.  He's "delivering aid" to Southern Sudan out of Lokichoggio in N Kenya.  Was going to hop on his cargo plane (with bike) and visit the both places.  Sadly it all fell through at the last moment, as he had to train a new guy.  Would have been a great bonus but perhaps not that great as I've just had a text about him being stranded on some random Sudanese airfield, everything going 'pearshaped'.  I'm sure he's being dramatic!  I hope he is!

Anyhoo, should be off to more interesting places as of Thursday.  Photos to come too.


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rabegao on

Gotta love Africa..!
hey baby. pole sana about bike and long dragged out license! although must admit when i read you had bike stolen, was very excited that you might be going home right away! too bad about chris too. have you heard from him since being 'stranded'? well, i guess this is just the beginning of all the quirky stories yet to come! call me soon! love you more than you know! Rita.

amy_n-b on

Had me worried!
I was freaked for a second there, babes! Glad you passed necessary bureaucratic hoops and realized that you hadn't gone on a detour to Spain in the process. Oh yeah and I can read English English. Missing you in the Rock City. A

murdo_99 on

Never a dull moment!!
Glad you got your bike back you had me going for a bit!!
I must regale you with your Mum and my motorbike training and test in Eau Claire (August 1st & 2nd) it took two days (10 hours practical and six hours theory) ...sounds like Kenya ...anyway glad you got your license.

Google earth is confusing ....'Lake Magadi .....
The hottest place to be for a clear night with tusker, njama choma and hot soda springs.' What does all that mean? Perhaps some explanation on your return will be required.

charlesaclark on

Re: Never a dull moment!!
Tusker is a psychotic elephant who gored to death the owner of Kenya Breweries. It is also the name of the most popular lager in Kenya. Nyama Choma is roasted meat. Salmonella on a stick as you like to call it. Hot soda springs are something I didn't feel like dipping into with 35oC air temps.

I think my description is better.

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