As planned we were all up early and the Kinshasa Biker Club guys arrived at the hotel ahead of our 5am departure - coffee, some breakfast (thanks to the staff of the Memling Hotel) and off we set for the last leg of what has been an epic journey!
It was great to have the bikers from the Kinshasa biker’s club lead us out of Kinshasa, and Joseph and Alberto stayed with us all the way to Matadi. We had two stops - one at Songololo, the town where we turned off in 2014 on our way to Angola and then on to Cape Town - it brought back memories for Rob, Paul and Mark.
After refuelling off we set to Matadi where we “lost” our 4th Land Cruiser which was hit by a truck! The trip to Matadi was a comfortable drive helped immensely by local knowledge. We were met by Dieudonne, the owner of Gecotrans, and his team and were treated to a fantastic refreshment stop - great coffee, cold drinks and great snacks - what a treat. We were now 360km into our plus 600km day. The next 120km was described by the locals as broken tar and the last 140km into Muanda was sand!! Charlie chalked up the final ‘pink’ of the ride!!
The team has really got it together over the last 28 days. We got through the day and arrived at the mouth of the Congo looking across the great expanse of water where it pushes freshwater at 500 000m3/s out into the sea for 135km! At the mouth the river is over 100m deep!
What an amazing achievement - what an amazing team and without our partners and the Randgold Kinshasa team, their comradeship and support, we would never have arrived - and two days ahead of plan!
We might have arrived at a point but it’s just another milestone in our quest to help those who have been left behind by society and to prove to the world that Africa’s people and resources hold great opportunities. What it needs is business people to unlock these opportunities - both national and international.
After champagne and a token swim in the Atlantic ocean by Raph and Rolf on behalf of the team, we travelled to the Hotel Gloria, a well-deserved dose of Luxury - what an amazing spot!! At dinner we were joined by the Territorial Administrator and his team and Mark handed out a cheque to Madame Mimbu - one of God’s special people who has given the last 15 years of her life to picking up children and woman left behind by society and giving them a chance in Life - thanks Madame.
Didi then presented the support team members as well as the Boyzonbikes with a set of carefully thought through trophies - Didi has been amazing and we all thank him for his support, comradieship and motivation. Tomorrow Gecotrans start crating the bikes in preparation for their shipping back to South Africa and the team flies out to get back to their day jobs.
Mark is on his way the Côte d’Ivoire and the start of his annual exploration visitations during which he will be making further donations on behalf of the Nos Vies en Partage Foundation - it’s worth noting that this is how NVEP started more than 6 years ago.
Should you wish to make a donation to the Nos Vies en Partage Fundraising drive then please click here