My Odyssey, part III

Summer is almost finished in Norway. After the scorching  sun we had to bear in July, August starts with rain. It also looks like the runners are back and soon will get some running stuff happening here, so  I don´t have to go through the memories or changing the appearance of the blog just to have some activity 🙂 !

Anyway, going down the memory lane again.  Where were we ? I guess here :

I gave some 5 minutes, the smoke went out and I started again. I drove a bit slower. I arrived to a place that was somehow similar to a market, and had something similar to a bus stop. The car was smoking again so I have stopped. I was at least out of the road. And there I froze. I had no clue what to do next. I had no idea where I am, what village is that, what is the matter with the car, how can I fix it … nothing. I had with me 17.800 MZN in 200 bills, a 3 months old dog, some water, dog food, no food for me, a phone and a smoking car !

As you can imagine that was not a very funny situation. I must confess I panicked … a bit. More. I tried to get my head around it and gathering all the bravery I was able I went out of the car trying to make it look like I stopped there because I wanted to. I had a headlamp with me so I put the hood up and try to see what on earth is going on in there. That was as useless as  a one-legged man in a butt kicking  contest. I previously mentioned about my fabulous skills and knowledge in car mechanic ? I just saw smoke, car parts and could not figure it out what to do. I put the hood back on, grabbed the phone and tried my luck : S. No answer. Tried again … no luck again. After fifth time I decided that I should have a back up plan. Lucky me I had the mechanics phone number so I called him. He did pick up my call. And I think he wished he never did it.  Among some other nice stuff I mentioned that if he does not fix my problem he will lose his job as I will take care of it. As I was seeing it he was to be blame for. He had the car for good 2 days, I asked if the car can make it till Nacala and he said yes. Well, we were far away from Nacala !

Long story short … He arrived at the place in about 4 hours when the sun was coming up. I saw than that I was in a sort of a market at the edge of some village. I remember that I checked the name. What I don´t remember now it is the actual name of the village. But we will just call it the village ! The mechanic arrived together with the apprentice. Remember the apprentice? An 18 years old kid that was from Nampula, living in Maputo, haven´t seen his family for 7 years. That is to remember. They look at the engine, pull some cables, unscrew some screws and they decide : the transmission cable ! They could of kept me in dark with that I had no clue what it means. The solution was to go slowly slowly back to Maputo and try to find a transmission cable. Which we did. What I drove in 2 hours we made now in 3 and a half.

Do not forget that all this time the poor little doggy was in the car. I tried to comfort her and gave her water and food. By the time I have arrived in Maputo again, I checked the transport box and noticed that was full. Of dog, and dog´s vomit. So by the time that we arrived in front of the so-called shop I had to clean everything. It was close to midday. The mechanic had to go to work. I stayed in front of the car shop and wait till will open. In Mozambique everything closes at mid day and opens again at 14:00. So I had to wait. Meanwhile I cleaned the car, the box, gave to the pup some water and let her stretch. I got the transport box out and as we sat on the sidewalk like that I had 2-3 people asking me how much is the dog. I guess I looked like I was selling the dog.

At 14 hours the car-shop opened. Lucky me, they did not have that cable I needed. So I gave money to the apprentice and he went to buy. Where ? I have no clue. At about 16:00 both the apprentice and the mechanic came back. By 17 we were ready to go. And we went. Me, the dog and the apprentice. As he haven´t seen his people in 7 years I lured him with the trip. I was passing anyway in Nampula so he could come with me. Like that I would not feel so alone and after all he was an apprentice !

I started driving and this time no police. I drove that day for about 6 hours. I was on the run from some days now. A day before hadn´t any proper sleep, but some hours till midnight. Spend all the night at the edge of a godforsaken village in the middle of nowhere and than all the rest of the day waiting for the cable  on the sidewalk somewhere in Maputo,  in the heat, with almost no water and no food. Than I drove for 7 hours. At the end I was exhausted. I found a camping place and rented a 2 bed cabin, got some food, took care of the dog and to sleep. Next day was the day I was supposed to make it up for the loss time.

Next day in the morning, 6 AM we were up an preparing to go. We were close to Inhambane. I was hoping to reach that day Quelimane. That is a 14 h drive so I was prepared for a bit of night driving, although that is not so advisable. In most parts of  Mozambique  are no street lights and as soon as the sun goes down driving it is an adventure. I felt it like an RPG game with monster. That type of game that you walk in some dark forest and suddenly a monster jumps in front of you. That is the feeling. Dark, black people dressed in grey or dark colours. What can you see ? And they use the road as it is safer than to go trough the bush. A car you can see it coming, a mamba snake maybe not, and I see there point there!

Going back to my trip. Started in a very optimistic way, got some food to eat as we go, some water, took care of the dog and we went ! From 6 o´clock in the morning till 16:00 the car stopped about 7 times. I drove in a period of 12 hours a distance that was to be done in about 6 hours. I was furious. I was … very disappointed.  The symptoms of the car : either smoke from the engine, or would just lose speed till eventually stop for good. The apprentice spend all his ingenuity, screwing and unscrewing, using cardboard, paper and plastic and we kept going. At about 15:30 the car stopped. For good. I had enough time to pull the steering wheel right and use the momentum so I take the car completely from the rod. Could not start it anymore. So there we were again. Me, the dog, the apprentice and a useless car in the middle of nowhere. This time we were in the middle of nowhere. As we stopped I thought I will take care of the dog first and then see to fix us. I was quite calm considering where we were. As I tried to take the pup out, the apprentice looked at me and said that it is not such a good idea to take the dog out. I answered that I will be careful at snakes and they usually run feeling vibration. And than his answer put me in a panicky state again : ” It is not about the snakes. Have you seen the pack of baboons half an hour ago ? Where are baboons there are big chances of having lions as well!”    This sentence paralysed me for a moment. Than my brain chose to ignore the information and I told the kid he is dumb. After all this experience  finished and I was home and safe, I have checked : the car stopped close to a place called Rio Save Game Reserve, which is close to ZINAVE NATIONAL PARK. Fauna in the park if you wonder : kudos, inhales, imbalabalas (female bushbucks), hippos, impalas, inhalas, changes, chipenes, cinereous kid kid of rocks, changanes, leopards, LIONS, cheetah, spotted hyenas (crocuta crocuta).

Have a nice evening ! Will  continue soon !

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