(Day 14) Mbeya to Kisolanza – 13 April 2011
Distance for the day – 304 km Odometer – 5 879 km
Hours on the Bike – 04:28
Donations up to date for Adelaide Hospital – R 47 864.00
This morning just after five, Richard was up and started fiddling with his bike. There was a funny noise coming from the back wheel, which he was concerned about. It turned out to be the pillion foot rest that got bent when his bike fell over and was now scraping on the back fork when the road got a bit bumpy. He needed a crowbar to bend it back, which we off course did not have. We set off after eight, thinking it was seven o’clock. There was again a time change; in other words now +3GMT.
Our first stop was the town of Mbeya for Rufus to register the simcard he bought off a street vendor. This simcard/modem setup has proved to be quite a mission to get all the modem setting done for each country. The other big problem is good data connections. It makes updating the blog very time-consuming because you often have no connection or loose a connection while uploading.
We travelled well and nearly got our first speeding fine, doing 59 km/h in a 50 km/h zone. It took a combined effort by all in the group to convince the Traffic Officers not to write the R500 fine. We were let off with a warning and left with big waves and even bigger smiles. At most of our rest stops we pulled off in small villages to buy a cool drink. There are always many onlookers that would stand closer to inspect the bikes and the odd guy trying to communicate with us. We saw a lot of heavy duty trucks on the road and a number of overturned ones lying on the side of the road. This is obviously a result of the up and down terrain of Tanzania and also because of narrow roads, often without a shoulder and bad driving.
We stopped this afternoon at “The Old Farmhouse” near Kisolanza. It is a nice setup at a reasonable price and we decided to move into the Stables. The only problem however was bad internet connection and electricity powered by generator for a short period during the night. Rufus then used his extension from his motorbike’s battery power to run the computer and other devices that needed charging for the next day. Let’s hope that his bike will start in the morning.