66 – Moyale to Marsabit (Addis to Nairobi – part 3)

Sun 31th Jan, On an onion truck, Marsabit, Kenya

Went down to their hotel in the morning. No news from the police station about their lost stuff. Everyone in town knew them, and some fella or other were claiming they caught the thief etc. But these were just suspects and they had no prove where the laptop went. They left their number with the police there just in case there was further development.

Introduced to Hilal, a spunky Israeli girl. She came into Moyale the evening before and got a visa extension to stay a week in Kenya. She had come from the south, got her extension at the border, and would be going south with us, but to meet with her friend in one of the towns below.

There was no bus going from Moyale to Marsabit apparently. All there was were trucks, gigantic cargo trucks with the interior caged by metal railings. These trucks transport anything from cattle, goats, to sacks of goods. The first trucks quoted 1000 KSH, but Hilal, who by then had been traveling in East Africa for 3.5 months had contacts from the previous truck and got all of us a good deal at 400 KSH each. We waited for the truck to come by. It was loading somewhere, so we waited at the steps. Along too came the Aussie trio of Stu, Steve and Mick, from Ethiopian Moyale, joining us on our truck. Minutes became hours and the 9.30 truck arrived only at lunch. Meanwhile, there were shady characters just sitting down on the steps with us, not saying anything. Some other local chased them away, telling us to be wary. Hmmm.


And so we left Moyale only at 2.30pm, sitting on sacks on onions, boxes of processed food, sacks of charcoal and other stuff piled into the truck at least 1.5 meters high. 7 of us travelers, plus about another 10 locals. It was impossible to get comfortable, the road was not paved, so despite travelling in a heavy duty truck, it was one bumpy ride. Progress was very slow, since the truck was pretty much loaded to the max. We traveled into the evening, then night. Arranging the sacks to make ourselves comfortable, we tried to get some sleep. It got cold as well, so the sleeping bag i took out was very much welcomed.

Reached Marsabit around 2 am. The rest moved to a nearby Kiasut hotel (150 KSH) but i stayed atop the truck, content under my sleeping bag. Hilal too, since i was using my sleeping bag as a blanket to cover both of us. Only problem was that we probably smelled of onions after that.

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