Sunday, March 12, 2006

Not Walking

My stay in Dakar continues. It seems I pushed myself over the line during my 10 day march from St. Louis. After arriving in Dakar and sleeping for 3 days with my stomach churning from the untreated water I had been drinking and questionable food I had eaten I hobbled around town getting things done on my weary blistered feet. During this time a nasty infection appeared on my right index finger but I was able to fight it off after inserting my knife into my cutical to release the pressure which had me in excruciating pain. At this point I thought the worst was over and I was on my way to recovery. Unfortunately this was not to be the case.

At least I can thank my right foot for waiting until my left foot was healed before beginning its decent into unhappiness. 4 days ago a painful and rapid infection erupted near the bottom of my shin like a petit volcano. I had been prepared to begin my walk to The Gambia on Thursday and unfortunately as I set off for Rufisque only 30km away the activity motivated the infection to further growth and it has now spread painfully into my foot rendering it swollen and useless. So instead of walking to The Gambia I was forced to walk directly to the doctor. I am now taking a slew of French drugs and have spent the last two days lying in my bed. I can feel the antibiotics taking hold and am certain to recover in a few days. For now, I sit and wait.

Tuesday, March 07, 2006


After a seductive stay at Auberge Menata in Noakchott I left by car for St. Louis, Senegal. Arriving in Senegal was yet again a tremendous shift, and even the colonial architecture and pervasive tourism was not enough to block the overwhelming sensation of having truly arrived in Africa. I recognized my need for more time to adjust and not wanting to stay still in St. Louis I decided to slow down my travel even further and walk the 250km to Dakar.

I took this decision rather lightly, and did not realize what an incredible adventure I was about to begin. Though looking at a map you may suspect that this central region of Dakar would be reasonably developed and populated I found that the opposite was entirely true.

So I spent the next 10 incredible days living through a never ending array of soul wrenching experiences. In truth, the adventure soon became so astounding, I was not sure people would even believe me. After remote villages, freezing nights, forest fires, broken feet, albino children, violent tribes, beautifull villagers, dolphins, puffer fish, shooting stars, sleeping in the dirt, giant birds, goats milk, malaria, waiting for morning and a million other insane things I arrived exhausted into Dakar and have spent the past 7 days recovering both my body and my mind.

Sometime during that stretch, I looked into my little pack. Inside was 2 carrots and a coconut. My only food out here miles from anywhere. It is those kind of moments that will change you forever.

Saturday, March 04, 2006

Martin and I

Me and Joshua
Originally uploaded by lindahl.martin.
A couple of rough looking characters during our Saharan crossing. Tired, but happy.

Under the Blazing Sun

Originally uploaded by lindahl.martin.
A photo from Martin, of me and my Bicycle under the blistering Sahara sunshine.