Sand, mud and asphalt with potholes were a real challenge on the B8 in Tanzania during the rainy season, which brought us from Tanzania to Rwanda from north Malawi.
Stuck in the mud
The mud was a challenge for us as well as for the local population. On the first part (still asphalt) we thought we had lunch at the side of the road ……. The roadside was so soft that the car immediately fell away, he just fell for nothing! We did not really have time to think about what to do, because the first best truck stopped linking his load and came to help us. Within 10 minutes we drove again!
A little further on, it stopped and the road turned into a mud pool. It did not take long before we encountered the first local van that was hopelessly stuck. The 20 men who were in it, were looking a bit or had started walking. Hup tow rope again packed, connected and they were loose again! Of course with the hilarity that it was the mzungu who could help!
Collision with a truck
The next obstacle on the road was a truck that stopped on a slope because it did not have enough power to come up. Both left and right along it was a challenge. Waiting until he could move on again was not an option, so just past it. We were almost there, when our bin on the roof hit his mirror and the pieces of mirror fell down. Suus was giving directions but was unfortunately only watching the tires and not on the roof ;-). So now no one could do anything anymore. Everyone immediately back to work to dig the road, so that we could go along. Then price agreed with the driver and we were on the road again. We met the driver again the next morning in a village. He had arrived at 4 o’clock at night!
The asset on the way: from mice to the beds up to and including the attraction of the village
There is not much along the B8 in Tanzania, so our accommodation consisted mainly of staying overnight with the missionaries. Sometimes we had to secretly drink beers and sometimes the beers were taken out of the dense fridge 😉 Sometimes they were super clean, sometimes we had mice droppings and fleas in the bed and we were glad that we could unfold a roof tent. We also had to spend the night in a village with two hotels (mainly for drivers) because we could not reach our destination anymore. Our car just fit in the parking lot and the door in the gate opened under our roof tent. The whole village was spontaneously walking around that evening to admire our roof tent. When we boarded our tent, 6 men from the hotel were waiting for the tent to see how we crawled in, haha again a wonderfully peaceful night 😉
Touched by lightning
After we had taken half the time in an idyllic spot for 2 nights to recover, we were recharged for part two. Another overnight stay at a mission where we slept in our tent when it went completely loose in the middle of the night. First a lot of hard rain, then such a hard blow that we were out of our tent within two seconds and were under the roof. Unfortunately due to the speed without the keys of the car! At the moment that Roel wanted to get hold of the lightning nearby and because he was standing on the ground (in the water) he got a shock that went through his finger with a bang and a spark again. Fortunately, I did not mind, but we were shocked and immediately crouched around the wooden bench to sit away from the rain on the ground, until the thunder was a bit further away. Another wonderfully peaceful night 😉
The heavy rain of that night had made the last part of the road impossible for the big trucks. The one after the other was steady and when arriving on the asphalt (read asphalt full of potholes) there was a row of 25 trucks waiting until they could continue. We have received a lot of respect for these men, who are literally stuck days, have to brave danger on slippery slopes with heavy loads, have to flicker to make the road passable again and drive on until they reach the end!
For us too it was difficult to drive this road in the rainy season and a relief to see the perfect asphalt again when entering Rwanda, but we also enjoyed it and are happy that our car has not let us down again left! On to new adventures in Rwanda.