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Old 07-16-2012, 10:40 PM   #1351
Jammin OP
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Originally Posted by SunnyJH View Post
Hi Jay
I've been enjoying your RR since months - thank you so much for your detailled background reports, you're a great writer!
Keep up the good work!
Hi Sunny, thanks for following along and enjoying the trip. Cheers

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Originally Posted by MrBob View Post
Have any officials given you a hard time about your lapsed registration?
I can see why you would feel inspired by this beautiful land. I wish there was a way for your reports to include sounds and smells, at least outside of the settlements.
I suspect that if Africa ever comes to terms with its corruption and distribution of resources it will match Asia in rate of development. The faces of the children show great intelligence and curiosity.
What lapsed registration? That photo was taken in August 2011. I'm on top of the paperwork. I have to be, mainly for the carnet, which requires up to date bike registration. I pay for my sticker online and have a friend send it out in the next care package
I noted this tip from previous travelers who said that if you have all your ducks lined up (paperwork all in line), there's much less chance of being hassled by officials who are just looking for excuse to ask for a bribe

You said it. Riding through that kind of landscape sure makes you believe that vast portions of this planet are still beautiful and untamed. Haha, yeah, I wish you could lick the screen and taste my food pics. Sounds are totally doable but require so much more work and bandwidth. Yup, very true that Africa seems to have so much potential but is stymied by so many problems.

Quote:
Originally Posted by badguy View Post
Thanks again for keeping this updated, Jay! I hope I can experience even a little bit of what you've shared with us, but I'm glad that even if I can't, I at least got to see your take on it
Thanks for following along. I really appreciate all you guys who you've been with me since the beginning.
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Old 07-16-2012, 10:44 PM   #1352
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Kenya, Part 4: Into Nairobi and End of Part 1 of my RTW Journey
August 6 - 10, 2011

Successfully riding the Lake Turkana route was a major accomplishment for me and it was an exciting end to the first half of my round-the-world journey. I was planning on taking a break in Nairobi for a few months and the drive from Maralal to the capital felt like a short hop compared to the rest of the journey.

The offroad that started in southern Ethiopia continued past Maralal and touched tarmac in Rumurutri. The convoy was now reduced to just Peter and Jill's Defender and sanDRina and after spending the night in Nyahururu, we crossed the Equator and entered the Southern Hemisphere. Hitting the highway at Nakuru was a bit of a development shock after being in wilderness for the past week and we celebrated our completion of the Turkana Route in proper Kenyan style - having Nyama Choma (barbequed meat).

After taking refuge in the overland traveler asylum of Junction Jungle in Nairobi, we all got properly stamped in at immigration and that signaled a break in my travels for the next few months.



_________________



We stayed at the Yare Camel Club and Camp in Maralal and captured these athletes in preparation for the International Camel Derby that was being hosted in a week's time. These dromedary camels originated in East Africa and have been used as pack animals through the drylands in the region, but during the derby, it's all about speed and strength. The competition is serious but amateurs can also enter and race these beasts through the streets of Maralal.


A signboard south of Maralal indicating the way to Isiolo, east of here. As Maralal is the gateway to the Lake Turkana crossing into Ethiopia, Isiolo acts as the gateway to the primary crossing at Moyale.


Carlos split off and wanted to ride a bit more offroad in the west and would meet up with us in Nairobi. It was great to ride with him.


sanDRina was back to her usual configuration with both side panniers back on. I thanked my overland companions for taking turns and carrying my heavy panniers. Riding without them definitely made the Turkana Route more enjoyable.


Peter and Jill spotted something exciting as we rode past the Mugie Wildlife Conservancy...


...a giraffe and some zebra. I had seen giraffes when I was a kid in Zambia, but seeing them again in the wild was a wonderful experience.


This giraffe was trying to bend down to drink some water but was very nervous and kept looking around and hesitating.


When he felt comfortable enough, this tall animal slowly bent its front legs in a coordinated movement to get its tall neck closer to the ground and...


...finally managed to bring its tongue in contact with water on the ground. It looked very graceful and probably required a lot of strength to keep that pose just to get a drink.


Back on the road and enjoying the last offroading for a while to come.


The scenery changed the further south we went and it became greener and greener, until...


...we hit the tarmac at Rumurutri. That was about 900 kms (560 mi) of offroad from southern Ethiopia to here; the longest stretch that I've done. We aired up our tires and...


...enjoyed the sensation of smooth roads. That looks like rain clouds, but it stayed away.
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Old 07-16-2012, 10:46 PM   #1353
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I spent the night in Nyahururu at the Olive Shade Lodge and for Ksh600 ($6.45) got secured parking for sanDRina and a hot shower.


The next morning, we crossed the Equator on the way to Nakuru.


My GPS told me we were crossing into the southern hemisphere, once more, after being in the north since my Atlantic crossing with Grimaldi.


Peter and Jill wanted to see the Coriolis Effect demonstration and I was up for it since I hadn't seen it when I crossed the equator in Ecuador.


When the water is drained from this green tub south of the equator, the floating wood strip shows that the water spins in a counter-clockwise direction. Then we walked about 10 m (33 ft) north of the equator and saw that the wood strip rotated in a clockwise direction and then right on the equator, there is no rotation and the water just drains straight down. It was pretty cool to see the Coriolis Effect in person and to realize that yes, you are standing on the exact position of the equator of this massive planet. The effect comes about due to the rotation of the Earth and can be seen on the large scale in weather systems; hurricanes spin clockwise in the northern hemisphere and counter-clockwise in the south. What I didn't know was that the exact position of the equator moves throughout the day by about 15 m (49 ft), which I think is due to the wobble in the Earth's axis.


Riding in the southern hemisphere and enjoying big trees once again.


At Nakuru, we hit the major highway through Kenya, which takes cargo from the port in Mombasa through Nairobi to Kampala in Uganda and onwards to Rwanda and Burundi. But that was for later. Right now, I was turning left and heading for the capital.


It was a shock to be on a highway after all these kilometers in wilderness and not to mention riding on the opposite side of the road for the first time on this trip. From Kenya into Southern Africa, they drive on the left side of the road, a vestige of British influence. But being a bike makes it easy to switch sides except that now right turns are longer than left turns.


Riding the escarpment of the Eastern Rift in Kenya and passing Lake Elmenteita, a shallow soda lake. It is one of many Rift Valley lakes in Kenya.


We stopped for lunch at a roadside stop that was chock full of barbeque houses, with waiters from every restaurant accosting arriving customers to eat at their place. We settled for the Pink Rose Butchery, as it was at the end of the line and offered a bit more peace than the others.


The butcher at Pink Rose holding up a leg of mutton, the most typical meat for Nyama Choma (grilled meat).


A huge rack of goat ribs and African Sausage on the smokey grill.


Celebrating the end of our journey down Lake Turkana with a feast of grilled mutton, liver and sausage. Oh yeah, there was other food too: the green stuff is mukimo - mashed potatoes with kale and onions; french fries are known as chips in Kenya, just like in the UK; and I was super happy to find out that chapati is a staple food in Kenya, a vestige of the long-standing Indian influence in Kenya (who were brought over by the British to work on the railway).
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Old 07-16-2012, 10:48 PM   #1354
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The last leg into Nairobi rides high up on this escarpment offering grand views across the vast Rift Valley.


Kenya's Rift Valley, blessed with great views and fertile soil.


My GPS directed me through Nairobi's streets straight to the overland meeting point of Jungle Jungle in Nairobi's Lavington suburb. My arrival into Nairobi signaled the end of the first part of my motorcycle trip that started in Chicago in March, 2010.


Chris, walking up to the motorcycle on the right, runs Jungle Junction and opened up this house in a large ground to overland travelers. He provides an excellent work shop where travelers can get their tired bikes and cars fixed. There's also WiFi and hot laundry - luxuries for travelers on the road. He's very helpful to travelers and has been a base for the overland traveling community in East Africa for many years.


His large front yard is open to camping and it was good to meet other travelers and feel at home.


Jungle Junction acts like an asylum for overland travelers, a place where you're not called crazy for wanting to give it all up to pursue wanderlust. This is Chris and Elayn's home-made buggy that they've been traveling with from Australia. Chris is a suspension engineer and it was good to talk about automotive dynamics.


Philip, from Germany, was another asylum seeker at Jungle Junction. He had traveled through West Africa before on a big 600cc motorcycle and was fed up with the weight of the heavy bike and so for his next trip, he decided to just fly in and buy locally-available small-engined bikes, like this Honda 150cc scooter. On this trip, he was going from Mombasa to Kinshasa, all the way across the DR Congo. He was so inspired by all the tubes that I had on sanDRina for storing parts and tools that he went out and bought some PVC tubing and made a few for himself.


Lu at Nyayo House, taking care of paperwork in Nairobi. I went with most of the travelers in my convoy to the immigration office where we got officially stamped into Kenya, which was a strange feeling after being in the country already for more than a week.


Riding with Guy and Lu in a matatu, Kenya's most preferred mode of public transport. They are usually decorated pretty wildly, although the government has tried to tame and regulate them.


Having dinner with Ferdi and Katie, whom I met at Tim and Kim's first and then traveled the Turkana Route with. They were continuing on further south and I told them to report back to me on routes and places to see when I get back on the road next.


And with that comes a conclusion to the first part of my journey that started in Chicago in March, 2010, criss-crossed Latin America, crossed the Atlantic and came down eastern Africa to Nairobi. I was going to be taking a break in Nairobi to do research for the distance masters that I'm studying for. It was going to be a change of pace from traveling to not moving for the next few months, but I'm highly adaptable and take change as it comes.

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Old 07-16-2012, 11:21 PM   #1355
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And with that comes a conclusion to the first part of my journey that started in Chicago in March, 2010, criss-crossed Latin America, crossed the Atlantic and came down eastern Africa to Nairobi. I was going to be taking a break in Nairobi to do research for the distance masters that I'm studying for. It was going to be a change of pace from traveling to not moving for the next few months, but I'm highly adaptable and take change as it comes.

Did any particular style or size of bike seem to predominate among this bunch?
Glad you made it safely to this point and thank you again for bringing us along.
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Old 07-17-2012, 12:10 AM   #1356
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This is it. The big one for me. I'm leaving on March 5 on a 2 year journey through Latin America and Africa. It's one way and don't know when I'll be coming back to the US. I've sold everything off and my only possessions will be my DR650 and what I can carry with me.


Thanks to everyone on ADV who's helped with bike issues so far and other issues on previous trips. Couldn't do this without your help. And of course thanks to everyone who has gone before me and provided inspiration and information through your ride reports


Thanks,
Jay

__________________________________




http://JamminGlobal.com

Follow on .com/JamminGlobal | at .com/JamminGlobal


The Global South. It's a term used to refer to the developing countries that mostly lie in the southern hemisphere. This story is about a two year motorcycle journey through Latin America and Africa heading towards India with a desire to raise awareness about sustainability and eudaimonia, the search for things that are true, good and beautiful.



After spending the first two decades of my life growing up in Africa and being schooled in India, I spent the last decade in the US specializing in university and subsequently working in corporate product design engineering. It's been a blast and I've been very thankful for the life I've had so far, making a plentitude of meaningful connections and having had numerous lifetime experiences. However, curiosity, that great driving primal force of all life, responsible for where I am today, has been exposed to the grand scheme of things and is gnawing inside of me to grab at the opportunity that lies within my potential to gain a far deeper understanding of life on this planet.

If that was my only goal of this journey then perhaps I should simply travel directly to the places where I expect to learn the most about how humans and the rest of nature interact and how best we can sustainably develop civilization and co-habit peacefully with nature. But in my short travels so far I have learnt that the most meaningful experiences are the ones you don't plan for; giving up control to the journey and letting experiences materialize. The road through a barren landscape could be a revelation of ideas or a synthesis of understanding. It is with this in mind that overland motorcycle travel appears best suited for such a journey.

Every opportunity has a cost and I've been trying to conduct the most thorough cost-benefit analysis of a long duration motorcycle trip through a majority of the world's developing countries. Benefits come easily to the mind, with the right side of the brain trying to visualize all the wonderful sights of unseen lands, all the tasteful treats from roadside shacks and all the warm people that are the one homo-sapiens. And the left brain pondering over how useful and relevant these experiences will be in shaping my life from here on out and positively enriching my productivity in future endeavours. However, the left brain can't ignore the looming elephant in the room, regarding security to my well-being, which I will mitigate to the best of my ability. Besides the obvious costs regarding finances and career paths, the one regarding longevity and safety has caused the biggest lump in my throat. Voluntarily giving up my comfortable life in the US and hoping for the best at the other side of the journey was not hard to decide on as I'm confident in my abilities to earn an income when that time comes again.

This journey that begins in March 2010 had seeds planted about four years ago, when I first caught wind of the possibility of riding around the world on a motorcycle from advrider.com, a global adventure motorcycling forum that has been a source of inspiration along with copious amounts of information. Subsequently, I toured around the US on my Suzuki GSX-R600 learning from veteran motorcycle travelers and coming into my own, belonging on the road. I then acquired a Suzuki DR650, a more appropriate motorcycle for unknown road conditions and tested the waters with a short trip around Mexico in 2007. The success of that trip convinced me that going further south would be very feasible and highly enjoyable. Since then, the planning has been solidifying up to this point. In between, I made a trip up to Alaska in 2008 and one down the Continental Divide in 2009. I tested various gear and configurations to see what would work best for this upcoming journey. I also evaluated my attitude in various situations, such as mechanical breakdowns and minor accidents. Seeing that I survived those with no long term effects, I am confident that I'll be able to get through situations that will no doubt arise on the journey ahead.



I have been looking forward to and dreaming of commencing this journey for the past four years. I have a feeling it's going to be good and I'm as prepared as I'll ever be.

Come along for the journey and please do write me a hello to keep me company on the road through The Global South...
wow... what an amazing story! make an audio book i will buy it!
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Old 07-17-2012, 03:35 PM   #1357
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Jay - if this marks the conclusion of the first part of your journey, can you tell us again exactly how far you've gotten on the second leg? Or are you still in between in Nairobi? I'm trying to figure out how up to date this last segment is in relation to what you're doing currently. I apologize if you've already made it clear - if so, I missed it or the memories have faded from my mind.

Thanks again for taking us on your travels.

- Dan
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Old 07-17-2012, 08:40 PM   #1358
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[i]

And with that comes a conclusion to the first part of my journey that started in Chicago in March, 2010, criss-crossed Latin America, crossed the Atlantic and came down eastern Africa to Nairobi. I was going to be taking a break in Nairobi to do research for the distance masters that I'm studying for. It was going to be a change of pace from traveling to not moving for the next few months, but I'm highly adaptable and take change as it comes.

Oh! Your blog is so exciting!

Will you write a book? Have you found a publisher?

Have you decided how long you'll stay in Nairobi - or are you "resting" now from the tour?
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Old 07-18-2012, 06:15 AM   #1359
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Did any particular style or size of bike seem to predominate among this bunch?
Glad you made it safely to this point and thank you again for bringing us along.
Yup, BMW F650. There's only one or two in this photo but whenever I visited, I saw a few more. There were some Honda Africa Twins, some KTM 990s and a few 1200GSs. I had many riders come up to me and say that, yeah, the DR seems to be the perfect bike for this kind of riding
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wow... what an amazing story! make an audio book i will buy it!
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Originally Posted by ClifNotes View Post
Oh! Your blog is so exciting!
Will you write a book? Have you found a publisher?
Have you decided how long you'll stay in Nairobi - or are you "resting" now from the tour?
Welcome to the journey Yup, planning on an audio book when the book gets written. Nope, haven't found a publisher, yet, but working on it...

I've actually been "resting" for the past 11 months in Nairobi. I'm just really behind on this ride report but almost caught up! Planning to get going again in early August.
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Originally Posted by Rider14 View Post
Jay - if this marks the conclusion of the first part of your journey, can you tell us again exactly how far you've gotten on the second leg? Or are you still in between in Nairobi? I'm trying to figure out how up to date this last segment is in relation to what you're doing currently. I apologize if you've already made it clear - if so, I missed it or the memories have faded from my mind.
Thanks again for taking us on your travels.
- Dan
Hey Dan, I'm still in Nairobi and Part 2 begins in a few weeks Hoping to get rolling in the first week of August, depending on when I get my visas for Southern Africa sorted (got Tanzania so far, Rwanda in process).

Yeah, I've been really behind on the ride report, but check the dates at the start of each new segment to see when it happened. Now for a few segments on my past year in Kenya...
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Old 07-18-2012, 09:21 AM   #1360
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Peter and Jill wanted to see the Coriolis Effect demonstration and I was up for it since I hadn't seen it when I crossed the equator in Ecuador.


When the water is drained from this green tub south of the equator, the floating wood strip shows that the water spins in a counter-clockwise direction. Then we walked about 10 m (33 ft) north of the equator and saw that the wood strip rotated in a clockwise direction and then right on the equator, there is no rotation and the water just drains straight down. It was pretty cool to see the Coriolis Effect in person and to realize that yes, you are standing on the exact position of the equator of this massive planet. The effect comes about due to the rotation of the Earth and can be seen on the large scale in weather systems; hurricanes spin clockwise in the northern hemisphere and counter-clockwise in the south. What I didn't know was that the exact position of the equator moves throughout the day by about 15 m (49 ft), which I think is due to the wobble in the Earth's axis.
Oh no!!! You fell for the tourist scam!
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Old 07-18-2012, 09:33 AM   #1361
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Oh no!!! You fell for the tourist scam!
I didn't know it was a scam It looked pretty legit. It was just plastic tubs and a wood strip. Is the trick done with magnets or something? I didn't see anything like that on there...
Anywho, I didn't pay the guy, so
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Old 07-18-2012, 09:46 AM   #1362
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Cool2


July 18, 2012

A quick update on my trip preparations in Nairobi as launch date for the second part of my trip comes up. I'm done with my masters research here and just need to revise my thesis and submit it before the end of August. With those obligations done, the bike journey continues.

These past 10 days I've been in the shop working on sanDRina and she's still got a bit more to go before being Jammin RTW-ready Milan, an Indian-Kenyan biker and mechanic is helping me out with the rebuild. He's a motocross racer and dual-sport rider, so he understands what needs to be done. We stripped the bike down and went over almost everything we could think of.

Issues discovered during the bebuild:
-Loose chain riding in Brazil and Ethiopia had eaten through the rubber chain guide and ate a bit out of the swingarm (new chain guide fabricated)
-Slide in carb has a corner broken off, bike still runs, but slide is probably near end-of-life (new part being shipped from States)
-Spark plug threads no good anymore; temporary fix done in Switzerland was fine till now, but threads not holding anymore, new brass insert going in



sanDRina stripped down in Milan's shop in Nairobi.


Yikes! Loose chain riding (in Brazil and Ethiopia) lead to chain eating through chain guide and a bit into the swingarm


Milan re-tapping the spark plug holes. He said that both holes had become slightly oval. The inner spark plug hole was damaged in Switzerland and the temporary fix of bashing in the threads and putting red Locktite worked till now, but no more. The head is currently at a machine shop getting a brass insert with new threads.


Hmm, first frame crack from riding. This is where the Subframe meets the Frame, in front of the airbox. Crack probably happened from riding fast over the corrugations on the Lake Turkana route with my big Top Box on there.


Benefits of good ol' steel frames, just weld her back together


Uh oh, crack noticed in the carb's slide. The piece is probably near end-of-life new part ordered from the States.



A few more days left in the shop, then some test runs to make sure everything is running smooth before setting off on Part 2 of my RTW journey.


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Old 07-18-2012, 10:46 AM   #1363
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I didn't know it was a scam It looked pretty legit. It was just plastic tubs and a wood strip. Is the trick done with magnets or something? I didn't see anything like that on there...
Anywho, I didn't pay the guy, so
Well, if you didn't pay, then...

I saw it on some National Geographic doc and did some research out of curiosity and our old friend "snopes.com" confirmed it was a scam. I guess they have a trick on how you place the bucket...or something like that.

And even some pay, I guess it's no different than any magic show. They pay and they are entertained.
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Old 07-18-2012, 11:03 AM   #1364
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Well, if you didn't pay, then...

I saw it on some National Geographic doc and did some research out of curiosity and our old friend "snopes.com" confirmed it was a scam. I guess they have a trick on how you place the bucket...or something like that.

And even some pay, I guess it's no different than any magic show. They pay and they are entertained.
I would have just run around the neighborhood flushing toilets, if there were toilets in the neighborhood.
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Old 07-19-2012, 10:22 AM   #1365
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I would have just run around the neighborhood flushing toilets, if there were toilets in the neighborhood.
That wouldn't help: The water spouts on toilets are angled, thus, screwing up the experiment.

Sorry to hijack the thread, (a little bit)

Back to the adventure!!!
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