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    Day 1.302 – Backseat Thoughts (UK)

    In the larger town Boujdour, we have a midnight break and it soon turns out that the drivers (two) need some sleep, so we all find a spot in the car, some in the back, some in front and I at the bottom of the van.

    Just as you probably can get so deprived of love that even a slap in the face feels like love, you can become so tired that even a somewhat awkward night huddled on the bottom of a Mercedes van (between lady legs – no, it wasn’t nearly as lucrative as it sounds – a gas burner, flip-flops and the legs of a chair) and with numerous awakenings when my various limbs began to sleep, can feel like sleep!

    At sunrise, we continue north and soon find a gas station cum restaurant where I order cafe au laits and croissants for the whole gang, as a thank you guys for the lift. Not even two cups can pick me up. From a need-of-sleep perspective, it was quite a horrible night.

    The question keeps circulating in my mind: Do I ride back, and if so, why? Why?

    I get off in Laayoune, say goodbye to the sweet Senegalese people, and find a cheap hotel (Marhaba) where I haggle down a double room from 40 to 30 dirham, a modest USD 3.50. Daddy The Cheap Rat (me) is wagging his tail. Although it is inconceivable to me that I find myself in Laayoune, it feels great to be in this situation, with a few more options for WT-boy’s next move.

    As it is right now, the idea of taking this journey through most of Western Sahara another two times (three in total), seem pointless, stupid even.

    I have seen how barren and monotonous the landscape is, I’ve had my fights in the Sahara all the way through Mauritania and the southern part of Western Sahara, and I personally do not feel I would miss anything by having passed through the area in a van. WT will not miss anything. My pride may feel slightly let down, ‘cos this is a bicycle expedition, not a hitchhiker’s journey.

    But shouldn’t I just be happy that I got this free ride by a friendly bunch of Senegalese people and then continue WT as I’ve been doing for the last 43 months?

    I’ll have to take my time here in Laayoune, the situation requires the right decision, because it is my fear that I will make a decision, that I’d later regret. If I choose to continue north, there is likely a little expedition voice inside of me who would like me to justify the decision.

    It is almost 3 years since I threw my gear on a bus last time, in Phnom Penh, Cambodia to meet my family, who arrived in Ho Chi Minh, Vietnam. Of course I had sworn I’d be there when they arrived. The Visa Office in Phnom Penh was unexpectedly closed on a weekday because of a presidential visit from Vietnam, and it fucked up my planning, so the bus was the only way I could get to Ho Chi Minh City on the same day as my family. So bussing it is not a common practice that I’ve used much.

    There is some sort of camel festival going on in Laayoune, who seethes and oozes with sociality, and families in the streets. It is wonderful to walk around in a quite civilized urban environment again. I pamper myselves with a cafe au lait and a fat cake at a fancy sidewalk cafe in the middle of main street, Boulevard de Mecca, munch down 1 kg of clementines, and feel almost like a human again.

    I see no live camels in the street, but instead I have my own camel feast in the form of a kebab sandwich with camel hamburgers at a local fast food restaurant. Later that evening, I even see a camel’s head hanging on a butcher’s meat hook, blood dripping and the long, feminine eyelashes intact.

    On this day..

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    One Response to “Day 1.302 – Backseat Thoughts (UK)”

    1. maarten Says:

      dicisions to make………… what a lovely dilemma’s!
      Where will I go tomorrow…………….ehhhh…………………..work or……………………ehhhhh……………work!!!
      Keep on rolling Nicolai!!!! Your the best!
      (ps. the translations sucks, but keeps me satisfied!)

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