mobile malaria project

Day 45: Karen to Mombasa

published on
Saturday 4 May 2019 | Distance travelled: 511 km (6821 km total)

Both today and yesterday were very boring driving days. We were driving along the main coast to interior highway, so we were constantly stuck behind slow moving trucks. Sometimes vehicles coming in the opposite direction, frustrated with moving slowly, would try hairy overtaking manoevures, and more than once did we have to move to the edge of the road to let them by without crashing.

An hour or so out of Mombasa we were met with a vicious rainstorm. Incredible rain that came down so hard that it was difficult to see much more than 20 metres ahead. As we entered Mombasa, it was a truly shocking road. We thought that perhaps we'd taken a a wrong turn, but no we were on the main road in that was just falling apart. The rains had made it particularly bad, but it was incredible the the vast amount of containers and produce that come through this busy port city would need to negotiate these roads. The one saving grace was that a new road was under construction, so perhaps the next time we come, like with so mant of the roads we've travelled, there will be a nice tarred road.

And so were arrived at the east coast - the pwani in Swahili. Journey's end. Although it was almost dark by the time we got here, and the sky was dark with rain, Jason and I were both full of pride and relief. Proud that we'd managed to drive almost 7000km across Africa without even a puncture, let alone a more serious mechanical ailment, but also that we had achieved our scientific objectives. It'll take me weeks to process this trip and to understand he depth of our learning, but it has, I hope been a transformational experience for all involved.