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Kentz Cairo to Capetown
Cycle Challenge

Cycling From Cairo To Capetown: Malawi

Thursday 27th March : Malawi

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Lake Malawi beach party

Africa’s most populated country per square kilometer and children are everywhere. Some ask for money, others run after you shouting and jumping. Reminds me a lot of Ethiopia.

We eventually arrive in Chitimba beach on Lake Malawi. Camping on the beach and enjoying a beach party. A mad night, memories of which will be filed in that "Crazy African Nights" folder in my head. Arm wrestling was up there, nudity was also high on the agenda especially for Clive who suggested skinny dipping as he led by example in the wee hours.

Nice hill in Malawi As we leave the beautiful beach we have a 28 kilometer climb on the bikes in the pouring rain. The gradient isn’t so bad and waterfalls everywhere make it easy to cycle slow. As we journey to the capital city of Lilongwe we pass through Mzuzu and Kironga. The people are exceptionally friendly and apart from every vendor and barman trying to short change you it’s very enjoyable.

Malawi Woman Aids Awareness Sign The roads are very hilly and we are always met with headwinds making this part particularly challenging for me. I need to change my bike cassette, chain and derailleur but I can’t do this until Lilongwe as the parts are stored away on a truck until then. Also for the last 2 nights I have been waking up at 1am and throwing up a lot, combined with diarrohea it makes for tough cycling.

Women in Malawi with Baby
April Fools Day Someone locked me out of my tent with zip ties. I think it's Wouter the Belgian Waffler, so I locked him into his tent at 2am with zip ties. I woke up a little later and got sick all over my tent. It's the Belgian curse.

3rd April Malaria ? I just found out I don’t have Malaria ! I was unsure as my symptoms for the last few days - not sleeping, not eating, diarrhea, vomiting, throat and chest pains at night and muscle fatigue were all present. I was advised by several locals who have had friends die of Malaria to take a test ASAP. I went to a local test center for the price of 1000 Kwacha ($8US) it took only 10 minutes for the test to clear.

In Ireland it takes 2 weeks to get the results, malaria moves quick so the usual red tape doesn't exist here. Mosquitoes are a big problem in Malawi. Lake Malawi is bigger then the land occupying the country hence with the heat and humidity mosquitoes are widespread. A big relief to be given the all clear, the nurse said I must have a viral infection. I’m taking a few different medicines but nothing really helps as I still have to cycle big distances every day so I never get a full recovery. Tomorrow I set out for Zambia 120 Kilometers away. Another night of cold sweats, diarrohea and vomiting awaits me in my pygmy size tent. Yummy.

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