maandag 19 maart 2012

Lovely Nigeria

As it turned out, the border at Chikanda, from Niki was indeed very easy, with Thomas and Anita getting a free 'laissez passez' and the officials on the Togo side not seeing that I passed through Togo without one or any Togo visa whatsoever.
 We used our visa cards in the first bank and were surprised the Naira's just flowed out like that, in Parakou,Togo the 4 ATM's refused my visa and mastercard just the day before. The road however turned into a difficult piste just 20 km into Nigeria continuing for about a hundred km, which was very tiring. Apart from a few aggressive immigration officials, we found the Nigerians to be very welcoming and friendly.

Anita, Thomas and Regis

 It also seems a lot cheaper here, eating streetfood at half a euro or less, drinking a cold coke for the same price and even having a litre of fuel for that same 0,5 euro. Diesel unfortenately is twice the price and pretty hard to find too, our convoy needs to drive into about 10 fuel stations to find one with diesel. Because of the badly potholed roads it took us 4 days to reach Abuja, bushcamping every night, preparing our own food while fending off the irritating small flies, that had the habbit to go inside your ears. Once we got to the busy cities of Mokwa and Bida we also experienced the famous Nigerian driving style, on one car I read 'My security is God', another read 'Take care, God is on my side', which sums it up nicely.
 In Bida, we noticed Anita's car was a bit low on the rear and found a big piece of the frame was broken on both sides. In only 2 hours they managed to weld it (very badly), and we were on our way again before noon.

 As it was saturday we decided to bushcamp once more and drive into Abuja early sunday, to find the person which Thomas was in contact with, and who had a 'nice big place where we all could camp'.

Sterilizing water as Regis makes dinner
 The contact proved to be Stefan, a german, who works for a big company here and lives in Abuja with his wife Dagmar and 2 kids. As overlanders and bikers themself, they knew exactly what we needed after 4 days in the bush. I'll just list what these hospitable people offered to us , campsite with swimming pool, internet, free beer, complete kitchen to use, workshop for the car from the company and they will wash our clothes and help with the visa. Never in my life I was welcomed so overwhelming, from our bushcamp in the morning, it was like returning to all the comforts of europe. So, now we will use our time in Abuja to get the visa and plan our route to Cameroun. While we are at it, we may also try for the elusive Angola visa, but our chances are slim. And oh, the welding on Anita's car is allready starting to crack and another piece of the exhaust broke off, seems like her car is in permanent repair, but then again, it is as old as she is.

3 opmerkingen:

  1. Ge ziet dat Nigeria niet gevaarlijk is hé. :-)
    Zelfs heaven in Abuja gevonden!
    En om Nigeria te vermijden pakten die anderen den boot... ai ai toch. Wat een avonturiers...

  2. Hi Tony ,
    Beetje laat , maar heb pas dit weekend vernomen dat je weer aan een nieuw avontuur begonnen bent.
    Succes en de groetjes aan uw nieuwe vrindin.
    Groetjes Pierre

  3. i met a few aggressive Nigerian immigration officials in Lagos airport. My flight in was 10hrs late so miss my connection and had to spend the night there instead of flying straight to Dar es Salaam. They couldn't understand why I didn't have a visa.