Rally - Blog
Jan 11, 2011

Our Adventure * Budapest-Bamako Rally


Category:Budapest - Bamako

Well everybody ........ this is it.  The last stuff is packed and tomorrow is D-day.  The kids is off to school, and I'm off to the adventure of a lifetime.

Dit is waarvoor ek nou al 6 maande lank lysies maak.  Die tasse is gepak en ek het op die laaste een gespring om die ding toe te kry.  Ek het al 'n paar trane gestort en ook lekker gelag en al 'n hele paar wyne geklink op die Afrika ekspedisie.  Kan iemand tog help om 'n nuwe naam uit te dink vir die "Overland Expedition"  iets oorspronklik soos "Afrika reis" of "Kaalvoet oor die ewenaar"   -  nee ek stem dis bietjie corny.

Blykbaar is my kar nou in Valentia afgelaai, maar ek het nog nie konfirmasie van die shipping agent gekry nie.  Ek hoop om more te weet, want dis nogal belangrik om te weet watter ringting ons moet inslaan as ons in Madrid aankom.

Danksy my Franse vriendin Delphine, het ek vandag my Togo visa in presies 10 minute gekry.  Dinge is maar net altyd makliker as jy die regte mense ken.  Ek weet nie of Togo nog die laaste Franse kolonie is nie, maar ek dink ek moet die ouens sê as ek daar kom; Nelson is uit die tronk en apartheid is lankal verby, dis nie nodig dat hulle meer kak van die Franse vat nie.

16 lande, 12 visums en 1 nie suksesvol nie, en 1 moes ek 2 keer voor aansoek doen en het ook suksesvol 'n 2de visum gekry vir dieselfde land.  Nie te bad nie...!  Dit het my 3 maande geneem om al die visa's te kry.  As daar enige iemand daar buite is wat dié lees en op reis is na nêrens, bel my, sms my, email my, skype my of plak 'n seel op 'n brief en laat weet my  -  ek vul jou visa vorm in gratis, for free,for nothing.  Ek is nou amptelik 'n profesionele visa invuller.  Ek het 'n diploma in visa invul.  Net een boo boo, Angola gee jou net 2 maande  van die dag van aansoek om in die land in te gaan, en dan kan jy  30 dae lank daar rond hang.  Ek het die 10de Des aansoek gedoen, en JA dan moet ek daar wees voor die 10de Februarie.  Probleem 1:  ek is dan nog in Mali.  Probleem 2: dis baie vêr van Angola af en probleem 3 is:  die tannie by die konsulaat, die vriendelike een, met die mooi wit tande en donker tan; sy sê dis hoe dit is! Ek moes later aansoek gedoen het bv Maandag wat verby is, die 10de toe hulle oopgemaak het.  Maar probleem 4 is:  dit vat 4/5 werksdae vir die visa.  Ek vlieg more. Die wiskunde hy wil hom nie logisties uitwerk nie.  EN ek kan eers weer aansoek doen as die visa wat ek nou het verval het.  So ek is nou in die hande van die bekwame man met 'n AK op die grens tussen DRC en Angola.  En ek is oortuig daarvan hy sal 'n plan kan maak.  Viva AfRiKa ViVa!!

The Budapest-Bamako rally is not only a challenging 8500km race to finish in 16 days, but also a gruelling self sufficient rally with no back-up support for man or machine. The race starts in Budapest, the capital of Hungary, travels through Europe and on to Africa where the real challenge starts - Morocco, Western Sahara, Mauritania, Senekal and finally it ends in Bamako the capital of Mali. This is a race about fun, adventure and charity. The Budapest-Bamako is now the largest amateur rally in the world, the largest rally across the Sahara and the most important charity car race in Africa.

I’m a wife and a mother. I’m a friend, artist, writer, photographer, dreamer, student, businesswoman, philosopher, music junkie, en-trepreneur, elephant & gorilla lover, dancer, traveller. listener, storyteller, romantic, believer, dreamer, entertainer, bush baby, rally driver, ski enthusiast, wild, passionate, adventure junkie and a child of Africa. I’m a work in progress, a journey in motion. I am a survivor!

I want to participate not in in this race, but also in life. I want to do this adventure for every man, woman and child out there with a terminal illness or just a dream. I want to participate to raise awareness for Mother Earth. I want to do this because I do believe God believes in me!

I’ve travelled to 51 countries in my short life. All paid for by myself. I travel because it is my library. I have learnt so much, I see, I smell, I taste and I feel alive. Travel is part of my life and I wouldn't have it any other way. I have done numerous 4x4 expeditions and outreach projects in Southern Africa. We are a group of woman who love to travel into remote areas and try do give back to the less fortunate. I was part of a such a team who took fishing equipment to Mozambique, diesel for water pumps in Hwange Nat Park and in 2010 we took school supplies, food and clothes for people in rural Zimbabwe - just to name a few.

I’ve taken part in the Spirit of Africa Trophy with Sarel van der Merwe four times, and held my own between all the men. I watched polar bears in the Arctic Circle and gazed over Africa from the top of Kilimanjaro. I used alternative modes of transport—rode across the Namib desert on camel back and trekked through Northern Thailand and Burma on elephant. I was blessed to look deep into a gorilla’s brown eyes in Rwanda and schlep trough thick rainforest in Borneo trying to find Urangatangs. Life has treated me good and God has blessed me with magical experiences and surrounded me with amazing people; a wonderful husband and 2 stunning kids!!

"This will be our most difficult rally to date. In addition to the driving and navigational hardships, teams will have to encounter the side effects of political turmoil in Mauritania and Western Sahara. Terror threats in Mauritania have also led to the cancellation and even-tual abandonment of the Dakar from the continent. In Western Sahara participants have to pay special attention to minefields around the track. "The Assa-Smara stage will be especially challenging. This leg of the rally was the scene of some heavy battles between the Polisario rebel movement and the Moroccan army. Antipersonnel landmines are a living legacy of this conflict."- said Mr Andrew G. Szabo the founder of the event. Crazy said my husband, Exiting said I!

The Travel Channel covers the Budapest to Bamako series and some of the European networks broadcast the event daily.

Only one thing makes a dream impossible and that is the fear of failure...

Am I scared of not succeeding, hell yeah! Am I scared of all the dangers Africa has to offer - definitely! But you know what, I don’t have the luxury of waiting to do this for my retirement. I don't have time to sell my house or save up for the next few years until I’m in a better financial position to pay for this adventure.

WHY NOT……

I have cancer
Charity begins in your heart. Please be creative. Please be generous.
Dream big, or stay at home!


Keep smiling