All great ideas have to start somewhere, and I guess you always hope that it would occur in some amazing dramatic way. Instead it was all down to our logistics and planning pro and all round wonderful person (she’s my girlfriend, and I am being glared at) Kate.
We were simpy preparing dinner one evening when Kate said she really wanted to do a long distance road trip. She threw a few ideas around – down America all the way to the tip of South America, across Europe and Russia or Africa.
Myself, I had always grown up reading Wilbur Smith books and had a, perhaps gold tinted, romantic image of Africa. I had had the opportunity to visit a few years previously while on a medical elective in Ethiopia and had loved it. I couldn’t wait to go back and had pretty much been dreaming of driving there in a Land Rover for three years solid.
A few nights of hard core blog searching (thanks to the guys at http://www.cornwalltocapetown.com and http://www.cruisingtocapetown.com) ,travel forums, and trying to become a 10 minute expert in all things overland, and both Kate and myself (Matt) were convinced. This was happening, and soon. But, could we cope alone? Or did we need more company. In terms of our relationship survival (I totally believe we would have been fine) and general enjoyment, we decided it had to be with more people, although the space would be limited.
We started thinking who would be up for joining us. Oddly it was pretty sparse. There were quite a few individual friends who would have been keen, but a couple and individual would be a bit weird. So we went through couples – which really came down to two people. Mel and Ben. Mel has been a good friend of mine since week one of university almost 8 years ago, but we had literally only just met Ben.
The next thing to do was gauge interest – would they fall for it. I sent Mel a message asking if she would ever consider such a thing and did she think she could do such a trip with Ben (it had be broached) – thankfully for our trip, the response was quick and very positive and a few days later we were at a pub in Dartmoor, note books and maps scattered about, making basic plans…. The rest, as they say, is history.
#adventure #planningmakesperfect #o4erland