Yesterday we set out early from the Kenyan wilderness town of Isiolo to try to get half way to Ethiopia a rough road of 220 km. We did 70 km with Gareth (and Floyd, a brave pillion) and me out front as we are the slowest on the rough stuff. Waiting for the others in the scrubby wasteland in 40 degree heat we realise there must be a problem, and all was reveaalled when Paul arrived to tell us that Tony’s bike had dumped all the hydraulic fluid and he was bouncing like you do if you have blown a seal. They initially intended to limp along but it was too much for the bike so a return was done. By then the army and the guns had arrived to assure us of safety in this lawless frontier area. This was he first vehicle we had seen all day, serious isolation.
As we left Isiolo in the morning you could look south to Mt Kenya and the cold green flooded hills we had squished through or North to the arid, thorny, sandy hot desert that we to head into. Bare-breasted camel herders nearly made the boulders on the road knock us off, and further along the bejewelled nomads wandering the roads, holed weighted airlobes seem to be an essential fashion if you want a spouse, and the boys with their ankle jewels were spectacular.
We are going to try this road again tomorrow very early with a truck to carry Tony’s bike and the rest of us riding like grannys an several of the main suspension shocks are showing signs of failour being a possibility. BMW has been great and it looks like we will have the spares needed to do repairs in Addis Adiba.
Today has been a day of Rest and R. and the contents of the well shaken first aid kit has been sorted. We had a refresher with the IV fluid kits as this is where you might need emergency treatment if things did go wrong.
We are staying in a great place out of town run by retired Dutch couple, the Isiolo town is a series od rocky pot holed streets, blowing dust and rubbish, 85% unemployment and several itinerant camels looking sullen and noisily vocalising their longing for the good-life.