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Of Rocks and Roads and Men

July 7, 2016 0 Comments

You know, I remember when it was the July 7 1977 (7-7-77), down at Tathra, NSW, with friends, playing up and making promises one could never keep!

But back to business.

We’re now in Portugal. Camping on a dam. Beautiful.

It’s been a mixed day, because I feel like I’ve lost a few members of the family. Travelling around the southern side of Morocco in the Sahara has had it’s impact on the tyres: 50° + heat, more than 1000km of stones, sand, gravel, 3.2 tonne weight /mass have all played their part. We have had, I kid you not, four punctures in about seven days. Rear right, front right, front left (twice).

The rear right was an interesting one, as it occurred in one of Tangiers’ busiest intersections. I think I skimmed a cut off pipe and slit the side, as the wound was big enough to push/pull an egg through. (I know, I know, why!)

The police where there, one a parking lieutenant, who at first tried to hunt me, but I told them in the best way that I couldn’t move as I would bend a rim. We talked for five minutes and they were both stoked.

The change went smoothly, until a driver decided he could park behind me, with, like me, his emergency flashers on. I thought it was great, as he formed a buffer for me, from a busy intersection. But he and his wife jumped out to shop and left the car. The policeman came back and just blew his whistle, until the ‘pea’, flipped across the road.

When the driver came back, he just arrogantly (Lynn’s word) argued with the policeman about his right to park where he pleases. No ticket, just an argument, then, vroom, off.

Anyway, the next day I bought two new tyres! The shop didn’t have BFGoodrich and he only had two of one type, so I bought them. The car tracks no better with the newies on the front, than the old BFGs with 60,000km on them. I had to leave the old tyres in the shop, Lynn wouldn’t let me bring them; that’s why I feel like I’ve lost part of the family!

The other part of the upset is that I thought I had a flight booked in a WW2 Spitfire, on July 20 in England. Woo-hooo! But, for some obscure reason the date was delayed a week, and I can’t make it. Not sure of the word to use, so I’ll leave it at that.

Lynn described both experiences to me as if I had lost a budgie (or two), that is a great way to think of it!

Landcruiser in MoroccoSo, now Morroco. Wow, what a place.

We agree Morocco is a mix of:
Iran – Muslim, traffic chaos, desert, adobe buildings, trash/rubbish, friendly people – city and country. But not as heavily enforced, extreme let’s say.

Indonesia – Muslim, traffic chaos, trash/rubbish, lots of people, a slight agro in the cities.

Mongolia – wide open spaces, rubbish, camping ok/easy, nomadic life, friendly people, helpful police, bad roads.

China – traffic chaos, friendly people, relentless, lots of people, honest police.

If you want to get a taste of the above four countries, and don’t have the time to do them individually, go to Morocco. It may not have any one standout attraction, but if you look at them, (markets, sand dunes, desert, adobe construction, nomad lifestyle, crazy traffic, bad roads) then you are way ahead of the game.

The one down side that got to me is the constant, constant touting and persistent offers of great deals and opportunities. I was amazed, and we have a good example on the dash cam, of the persistent offer of services, whether or not you need them. Snake oil.

I don’t have the mechanism to deal with these situations, but Lynn does, and takes over. I think it is a common thing, as when I was ready to give a spray, the guy (always a guy), would back off, and go to Lynn!

I found it distasteful, confusing and a major distraction for what you were trying to achieve. I’m done with that. A far more positive experience than any of the “clutter”.

So there!

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