June 27, 2010

World Cup - Runners & Riders

Well, we might be living in a tent on top of a Land Rover, but we are following the World Cup as best we can.  Mainly via Radio (BBC World Service) and the odd bar TV when we can find one.  Needless to say, we have executed our own cup draw and after the initial rounds, these are the results of the teams we picked going through.

Vick's Teams into final 16
  • Uraguay
  • Holland
  • Chile
  • Germany
  • England
  • Paraguay
  • Portugal
Nick's Teams into final 16
  • S Korea
  • USA
  • Ghana
  • Slovakia
  • Brazil
  • Argentina
  • Japan
  • Spain
  • Mexico
We hope that Rooney can score some goals today - May the Force of Bobby Be With Him !!

If people would like to come up with a "prize suggestion" for the winner of our on the road world cup draw and also a suitable runner up prize, please send your suggestions to nick [at]

FOOTNOTE: As we all know Spain won!  They deserved to win even though Holland seemed to adopt the Kung Fu Strategy for the game.  We were GUTTED about Ghana but loved speaking to the people in Ghana about how they did. 

Nick & Vicki
Stonehenge to Cape Town 2010/11

South Africa did a great job n the World Cup - Well done guys!!!

Lonely Planet South Africa Lesotho & Swaziland (Country Guide)   Lonely Planet Cape Town (City Guide)  Lonely Planet South Africa, Lesotho & Swaziland

June 25, 2010

The first 30 days .......

Well, how 30 days can fly by so fast is just unbelievable, how did we fit in work during our 'normal' working lives???  I have decided that as Nick is in charge of the Statulator, I will post a summary every 30 days of what's here goes the first 30 day summary:

Countries visited - Scotland, England, France, Belgium, Holland, Germany, Austria & Italy
Miles travelled - 3436
Sunny days - 14
Coldest night - 2'C in the Dolomites, Italy
Highest Mountain Pass Travelled - 7327 feet
Most listened to music - 'Into the Wild' soundtrack by Eddie Vedder
Best showers - Loch Ken Holiday Park, Dumfries & Galloway, Scotland (extremely clean and best showers I have had in the UK in the last 9 years.)
Most useful things - Radio to listen to World Cup football matches, spare keys to the landy & bungy cords.  Tent peg, BBQ Tongs & Duct tape to rescue locked in keys!
Least useful things - Factor 50 sunblock & Deet (a time will come for these!!!)

1) Not being able to see everybody before we left
2) Locking our keys in the landy twice (on day 1 and in Dover just before catching our ferry :-( Score on this Nick 1 Vs Vicki 1)
3) Nick accidentally bought alcohol free beer in Germany!!  Major slip up!!
4) Realising how unfit we are....  but we knew that already
5) Weather in Germany & Austria - great if you are a duck!!

1) Getting back into the landy after locking ourselves out :-)
2) Watching the opening match of the World Cup in Amsterdam
3) Visiting family & friends along our route (sometimes at very short notice so thank you to everybody for being so accommodating.)
4)Walking in the Dolomites 
5) Scotland in May - great time to visit

 1) We have used our first aid kit twice for minor injury/ailments
 2) I hid the treats away from Nick (Comment from Nick: "Ginger Nuts are 'joint' property and should not be hidden")
 3) The Kelly Kettle stinks when you use fuel that isn't dry enough
 4) Our Skin so Soft 'midge protector' solidified in the cold and hadn't yet thawed when we needed to use it the following day.....have to keep it in a warm place.
5) Smell of the "malt safe" in Talisker Distillery not to my liking (Nick was in his element)

Nick & Vicki
Stonehenge to Cape Town 2010/11

If you have the chance, visit Scotland and go to Skye

Lonely Planet Scotland's Highlands and Islands  Lonely Planet Walking in Scotland  Lonely Planet The Netherlands (Country Guide)

The Statulator !

When we researched this trip we found only a few travel blogs that kept reasonably detailed records of what they spent.  Most of this related to fuel consumption and top level spending data.  In a bid to offer people a more detailed look at travel spending and to help those planning future trips we will post some of our detailed spending by way of "The Statulator". 

Its basically a spreadsheet that lists and records all our spending broken down into a variety of categories.  It has a range of data, including; budget tracker, fuel table, accommodation table, daily spend, mileage, temperature etc...etc...  

We plan to post data from our European leg at the start of September so the data should help show some trends and if we managed to stick to our budget !!  :-)  Sorry if it all sounds Geeky but its proved quiet useful to us already....  we hope it will prove useful to you too.  When it becomes available we will let you know.

Nick & Vicki
Stonehenge to Cape Town 2010/11

We used the Haynes series of books for the Land Rover

Land Rover: 60 Years of the 4x4 Workhorse  Land Rover Ninety, One Ten & Defender (Haynes Enthusiast Guide)  Land Rover 90/110 and Defender Service and Repair Manual (Haynes Service and Repair Manuals)

June 24, 2010

Ciao - What's that smell?

After some initially promising weather we had 2 weeks of grey / cold / rain in Central Europe and to be honest we got a bit sick of trying to dodge the wet weather so accelerated our trip South to Italy!!  Did a nice walk in the Dolomites and now on the Venice peninsula chilling and looking forward to sun, a trip to Venice tomorrow and exploring more of Italy which will hopefully be kinder to us weather wise than Holland, Germany and Austria that were a complete wash out!

HOWEVER!  One of the downsides of all this dampness has been the "creation" of an interesting aroma in the Landy.  For a while, it was considered to be a "general travel fug" but on closer inspection was tracked down to Nick's flip flops.  This smell resembles that of Eau De Border Collie and it reached "action has to be taken" status after Nick was left in a confined space with a camp site owner as he checked his email (he thought she was just being polite by leaving the door open).  Needless to say, now that its a lot warmer things are "OK" and Vicki is monitoring the status of said footwear for any re-emergence.

Nick & Vicki
Stonehenge to Cape Town 2010/11

The offending articles - thanks Reef!

Reef Men's Fanning Flip Flop,Dark Brown/Tan,10 M US  Reef Women's Ginger Sandal,Black/Black,8 M

June 11, 2010

Day 20 - Go Bafana Bafana !!!

Well, we are are now in Amsterdam and having had a port and cheese tasting for brunch we are now looking for a bar to watch the opening game of World Cup 2010.  Everything is Orange here as the Dutch get ready for the world cup.
Go South Africa!!!!!

Nick & Vicki
Stonehenge to Cape Town 2010/11

What a first game!

June 9, 2010

Highlights of UK Leg & IDPs

We are posting a few pics of our UK leg.  Nick commented that late May is perhaps the best time to visit Scotland as the midges are few in number and Spring has Sprung.  We went to Skye and Torriden and headed over to Aviemore and Edinburgh before heading to Lindisfarne, Bambury and Hadrians Wall.  We then headed South to pick up some paperwork and do a final pack before we headed off to Dover. 

BTW - for anyone who might be doing last minute paperwork, you can pick up your International Driving Permits (IDPs) at the Dover East AA Shop.  The guy there (Bill) is very helpful and issued us with both IDPs (we needed two each as we are going to Nigeria / Cameroon) IDPs cover two conventions and you need to check your route and the countries which have signed up to each one. 

In the end this turned out to be a good way to get them as it only took 10 minutes to issue them, fully stamped, there and then :-).  NOTE: the AA shop is not open on a Sunday and you have to buy them before 3pm.  Call ahead just to check !!!

Nick & Vicki
Stonehenge to Cape Town 2010/11

The Isle of Skye - What can we say, just do it!
Skye: The Island & Its Legends  The Isle of Skye: A Walker's Guide (Cicerone Guide)  The Scottish Islands - Skye & the Western Isles

Mentioned in dispatches & The Washing Machine

We have had a couple of mentions of late.....1st was on the Overland Live Blog and also a mention on the Solar Sister Facebook site.

Tomorrow is going to be washing day.  A few people have asked what are you doing for washing your clothes....  well the simple answer is what we call the "washing machine" or if you are in the "trade" its a water tight bucket with lid strapped to the roof.  We are using a green washing product that uses soap beads inside a ball.

They are supposed to give you 200 washes....we will keep you posted on how we get on with them....  they are going to have to shift some grime and dust, and after Nick's last oil change (that's oil from the Land Rover NOT Nick) he already needs a new shirt!!!

FOOTNOTE: We (Nick) killed the washing machine in Ghana by reversing over it!!  We got a new one for Xmas in Cameroon.
Nick & Vicki
Stonehenge to Cape Town 2010/11

These things are good value and eco-friendly

Washer Balls with Oxy Powered Detergent Laundry Balls- Set of 2   Eco Laundry Balls (plus 2 free dryer balls)

June 4, 2010

Saying Good Bye

Well, after sorting out our paperwork (almost), we are off to Dover.  We said goodbye to a great bunch of friends during a balmy 30'C camping weekend in the New Forest and then headed North to Scotland to sample 10pm sunsets and fine malts.

We had a great time, visited Skye (and its famous Talisker distillery) and headed off to see some of the more remote parts.  Big thanks to Sarah, Paul, Audry, Abbie and Patrick for letting us stay with them.  We found out that we have a growing fan base and today we were sent our first piece of fan mail.  The artist is a Mr Davies Esq, who likes Land Rovers, Garages and Helicopters.

 Main land Europe beckons and we hope the sun shines!!

Nick & Vicki
Stonehenge to Cape Town 2010/11

The New Forest & Dorset are amazing places

Dorset, New Forest & Isle of Wight with Kids: Full-color lifestyle guide to traveling with children in Dorset, the New Forest & Isle of Wight (Footprint - Lifestyle Guides)  HIDDEN PLACES OF DORSET, HAMPSHIRE AND ISLE OF WRIGHT: An informative guide to the more secluded and less well-known places. Includes the New Forest (Hidden Places Series)  Cycling in Dorset and Hampshire: 25 Cycle Tours in and Around Dorset and Hampshire, Including the New Forest and the Isle of Wight (Cycling Guide)