The next stage of the journey into Sudan required us to get a ferry along the Nile from Aswan to Wadi Halfa, but first we had to book the ferry, and hand back our temporary Egyptian licence plates to the police.
The first step involved going to the traffic court to get a document which proved we hadn’t been involved in any accidents or been caught speeding. After that we headed to the Traffic Police office to hand back the plates and receive another document we would need for customs. Only then could we book ourselves onto the ferry.
The rest of the day was spent trying to be productive and finding someone to fix the cover for the rooftent that was ripped on day 1 when I drove the Landrover under a low car park ceiling in Brugge. We found a local cobbler who sewed it back together with leather for 30EP/£2.60/€3, and then headed off to the souks to buy some meths, spices and to get our laundry done.
With one day remaining before the ferry we decided to change the oil on the Landrover, and so we found a local disused garage with a pit to use. Whilst underneath the car, we found out what the skeaking coming from the rear suspension was. The speed bumps throughout Egypt had taken their toll, and the shock absorber bottom washers that adjoin the bushes had sheared over the retaining bolts resulting in a large amount of ‘give’ in the shock absorbers. We decided to leave repairing it until we arrived in Sudan.
After the oil change, we travelled south to visit the Philae Temple on an island in the middle of the Nile. When the Aswan dam was constructed, it left the surrounding area completely flooded, including an old temple site dating back at least 2000 years. For a long time the Philae Temple was under water, but with the help of UNESCO the Egyptian Antiquities Department took down the temple brick by brick and re-built it on a new higher island which can be visited by tourists.
In the evening we finally finished watching ‘Withnail & I’ on DVD after four times in previous evenings of trying to watch it, only to fall asleep half way through.
- David Jennings & Nathan Topham
- Wrexham, Wales, United Kingdom
- For the past 5 years, me and my best friend Nathan have talked about the possibility of travelling around the world by land and sea, and so finally we have a route, savings and time to set off around the world. What we are doing is living out a dream, a dream we share with many people worldwide, a dream of travelling this vast, diverse, beautiful and interesting planet, but unlike the many others who keep it as a dream, we have the tenacity to make this dream a reality.