Brazzaville also shaped up to be a new exercise in patience for The World by Road. We came into town expecting to get our Angola visas without to much problem, but instead spent about two weeks dealing with probably the most incompetent and confused diplomatic corps in the world. Again, we were forced to push on after a long and frustrating time ultimately without any Angolan visas in our passports. Unfortunately, upon entering Kinshasa in the DRC on the other side of the river, we were promptly deported for not having onward visas… a regulation that had only recently been put into place. Forced to return back across the Congo River to Brazzaville, we enlisted the help of the US Embassy. The embassy staff was outstanding and helped us to get into the DRC in a very round about way which included getting signed, sealed and stamped letters stating that our final destination was Zambia even though it is essentially impossible to travel overland from Kinshasa to Zambia.
While we waited for the diplomatic process to take place, we were again shown a great deal of hospitality from some new friends… Olivier and his wife Katherine who ran a hotel/restaurant in Brazzaville called the Hippocampe. Olivier was sympathetic to our cause since he had completed the daunting task of actually riding his bike around the world when he was younger. The Hippocampe was a great place to rest and share stories of overland travel in a friendly environment. We also had the great fortune of meeting Stewart and Analesse, a couple from South Africa who were eagerly awaiting repairs on their Land Rover so they could continue their trip north through Africa.
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