17 March 2010 The final move

Kairouan

After waking up we decide not to go and waste our time at the Consulate anymore. We call them at 10 to find out if there is a development with our case. The lady requests a call back in 30 mins to be able to speak with her colleagues in the Ministry of Foreign Affairs. We call her later as agreed but the only thing she can say is that the Ministry has received our papers, and our application is under process. As long as the Consulate doesn’t receive the positive or negative sign from the Ministry, they can not say anything. They should have mentioned it before.

We don’t lose the mind but we decide to move on. Enough of the waiting that has no results. We came here to go South to Benin. So let’s go to the South. We unpack and repack the car, and everybody do also. The teams are again happy for the new developments. Everybody organizes themselves. We agree to meet in Gabes and we leave the organizers behind. The mood is again rising up high. We are singing and enjoying the drive. How international we are! Gondwanateam leads the convoy and the 3 other cars are following us. In our convoy we have 4 cars with 4 nationalities. 4 Hungarians, 1 Bosnian, 3 Polishs and 2 Latvians. These 2 teams barely speak English or other languages but we manage to communicate. The Latvians are also tough guys. They’d driven to Mongolia back and forth all alone.

We are passing by Kairouan, and we think it’s a good place to stop. We are right as this is a Unesco World Heritage town with a Big Mosque and an Old Town. It’s beautiful to walk on the streets and enjoy the ambiance of the town. Later we eat some local food and then we are heading toward South.

Still no news from the Algerian Consulate therefore we are ready to go across Libya, as the border is very close now. We try to get some more information about the visa requirement, and ask our friends to find it out. Tomorrow morning we will know more about it. When we tell our idea to other teams, they are also very excited and would join our attempt to get to Lybia. Our little group right now is grown to 32 volunteers and we do hope to be lucky enough for the visas.

One has to know that Libya has announced that all Schengen countries are not welcomed anymore in Libya, therefore they are not issuing visas for the citizens of these countries. We believe we can be the exemption of it and with great expectations we are driving to Souther and Souther.

We stop in Gabes, and find a nice hotel to stay. No internet access though but we are going to discover the town.