2002 was uneventful really. We did a few trips with the R80 GS. Desert, Farms etc. We decided in the year that we would go up to Namibe’ after Christmas. I then tried to get info, but found the Angolan Embassy all keen on the phone and then no Action. Finally I got Caesar’s number and he was most informative and helpful. I remarked to him that I was worried about the heat. Urda has a problem, becoming grumpy and brain dead in hot weather. He replied that it would not be the heat that would bother us, but the torrential downpours. OK that settled it for me. I really don’t mind riding in the rain for an hour or so. But to spend days soaked on POTHOLED roads- Nooo thanks ! And then Harald dropped of a Wedding invitation of his near Ondangwa. Why not the north again ?
On the bike the only Modification was a set of Progressive Front Forks and the Fitting of a TKC 80 tyre up Front. I would love such a Tyre in the Rear, but Continental does not import this. Hopefully another Manufacturer who believes in Service will take up the challenge and supply such excellent tyres. For a change I decided that Urda & myself would service the bike before we go on the trip. This we did on the 23’rd of December. Yes I do have most spares, should something go wrong.
We spent Christmas Eve with Urda’s family and then left for Grootfontein, via Okahandja, Osire, Waterberg on the 26/12/02.
I had not travelled these roads for a long time but they proved reasonably maintained. We encountered scores of Reenvoels, and on a bike from a few Metres away, rising of the Ground they are massive. That night we kicked back at Stefan and Ulrike’s Farm. The next Morning we left for Onalulago. The Roadblock at Oshivello was well organised and things went without a glitch. They radioed in the Registration number and got all pertinent info (including Owners Name) within seconds.
We arrived, with the festivities just getting under way, around Lunch and were again welcomed warmly. I must say the Ovambo’s can be extremely friendly. The Wedding was different in that it was spiced by Thai food. Really great !
On the 28 we left for Okahaue and then hit a Sandy deeply grooved 2spoor pad towards Opuwo.
If it were not for those springs and the TKC 80 up front, you would probably not be reading this. I have raced Desert for many years and I have no problem in having a bike choose its own way. But when that way is at 100 Kph and sideways over a Middlemannetjie… Controlling way over 200 kg’s is no fun. But Except for a few Bobbles when I did not go with the flow, it was Character building. We hit a Cuca shop at the Kunene Road Crossing that afternoon (near Kowares) and decided a Cold Beer was the way to go. The Problem with Beer and Exhaustion, is that it makes you drowsy. We then cruised down to Kamanjab on a well-scraped road. At the Galton Gate animal diseased checkpoint, really drowsy people greeted us. They did not smell of Booze, so I suppose something else was making magic here.
As we hit Kamanjab I noticed a Flat rear. We were advised by the Gas station that there was a Biking mechanic in Town. This was an extremely likeable fellow and he agreed to help us the next Morning. We stayed at the Campsite just outside Town. The owners were gone, but we were made welcome. But as always, Camping at a lodge really hits your wallet as far as food and beverages are concerned. The next morning Riaan did a great job helping us getting the rear fixed (2 thorns) and of we were towards Xhorigas and then Uis. This time we stayed at the White Lady rest camp. I can really endorse these Folks. If you get to Uis, stay there !
Well rested we than took of for Hentiesbay the next morning, hitting de Duine just before Lunch. Here we met some Highway Motocrossers who had travelled up from Cape Town on their 1150 GS’s. We swapped a few war stories. Our homemade Vented shirts were admired, thereafter Urda and me decided to enjoy a Crisp White wine on the stoep with our Lunch and watch the Holidaymakers in the process. The new Teeny Fashion entails Jeans below the Hips and a shirt ending above the Navel. Cool, except if you still have Baby flab peeling out between those Garments. Conscious of this fact the girls tried to pull their shirts down and inhale- Clown ? Also I noted that the youth seems to get hammered in Public with no qualms ?
Urda and me got along really well on this trip, enjoying it to the fullest. This I attribute on her getting rest before the trip. Also I believe that the time spent with her Family in advance set the mood. Honorary Psychology degrees from anyone ? In the afternoon we puttered towards Swakopmund and joined my Folks for a few Days. New years we spent with Bill in the Dunes. I have always preferred the New Year Party’s with a few friends rather than Jolls. If they are close by the Sea even better. We returned to Windhoek on the 6’th. What about Angola ? We started our Portuguese lessons and decided to go to Lubango in mid August. Hopefully Paul & Pam will join us.