They say it’s not an adventure until somethings goes wrong. We’ve all been there, you’ve planned the perfect adventure, and everything is going so well and then all of sudden, out of nowhere drama strikes. At the time you think the world has crashed down in front of you but looking back the drama always turns into a pretty good story to tell. Over the years I’ve managed to get myself into a few awkward situations and I’m sure there will be more to come.
Banned from South Africa
Well this is a pretty big one and something that comes across a lot worse than it actually sounds. Being banned from South Africa isn’t one of my proudest moments. On December 21st, 2015 I was heading to Kenya to spend Christmas with my family. This was the day before my visa was suppose too run out, so I was leaving it close anyway. My flight from Cape Town to Johannesburg was due to leave at 9pm but thanks to a delay my flight was put back to 10pm. The flight is two hours to get to Johannesburg meaning that I arrived at the airport at 12pm and was going to go over my visa. After fighting my case with the airport authorities, I was given a one-year ban from the Republic of South Africa which I was equally annoyed as I was working in South Africa at the time. To make the situation worse when I landed in Nairobi my suitcase didn’t arrive. I had to wait two days until I was finally reunited with my suitcase.
Arrested in Kenya… Twice
Another one that sounds like I’m a criminal. The first occasion I found myself on the wrong side of the law in Kenya was when I was travelling to Nairobi from Mombasa. This is a long eight to ten-hour journey. The car I was in at the time was pulled over for speeding half way between Nairobi and Mombasa and in the middle of nowhere. Our driver was taken away to be questioned and had to head to court to find out his concequence. Whilst waiting we had to sit in a grotty Kenyan cell. Finally, after 2 hours we were free to and carry on our journey to Nairobi.
The second time I found myself in a sticky situation with the Kenyan police was whilst out shopping in Kilifi town along the Kenyan coast. I parked up to go to a man selling fruit and vegetables on the side of the road. After buying my fruit and veg I came back to the truck to find an angry policeman telling me that I’ve parked illegally on the side of the road. This resulted me driving the policeman to Kilifi police station. On the way I managed to persuade the policeman to a bribe with the loose change in my back pocket. Which he keenly agreed…. It worked out to be £4.50. Thank god the Kenyan policeman are so corrupt and easily take a bribe.
Stung by a Bluebottle fish
This occurred on a family trip to Kilifi on the Kenyan coast. I went out one morning for a wonder up the beach. On the way back, I decided to go for a quick swim in the sea. I was swimming for a good 10 minutes enjoying the waves and the warm water when suddenly I got an incredible sharp stinging sensation in an area where no man wants to be stung. With great pain I jumped out of the water and laid on the sand for a few seconds taking in what has just happened to me. I managed to stumble to feet and take the two-minute walk which felt like forever back to the house where I treated the sting and then carried on feeling sorry for myself for the rest of the day.
I had only been in Kenya for a few days when I was asked to take part in the Kilifi gold triathlon. I feel that I’m a fairly athletic person, so I decided to take the offer up. The triathlon consisted of an 800m swim followed by a 20k bike ride and then finished with a 5k run. So, with no training I decided to take part in my first triathlon. At the time I was a strong swimmer, so I wasn’t worried about the swimming. The only problem was that we had to swim in the creek. This felt like swimming in the ocean with the waves making the swimming a lot harder and after 600m of swimming I had eventually ran out of energy. So, I called for the rescue boat to take me back to shore which was rather embarrassing but left me with some energy to crack on with the 20k bike ride and the 5k run. I started the bike ride strong but after about 5k my seat broke which was far from ideal as the ground was hard and bumpy. So, for the following 15k I rode my mountain bike like it was a BMX. The tough terrain took it out of me so I as I came to check point to switch over to the running which happened to be the finish line as well. The smell of burgers and the beer tent in sight was enough to take me out of my misery and I gave in. Maybe one day I will return to complete the dreaded triathlon.