Day 38… Tuesday 9th May
Discovered some old potatoes purchased from Senegal buried deep in the back drawer of Greta. Only a small maggot infestation to deal with before we set off. The Ivory Coast roads are a dream. Proper road markings, signage and safety barriers. Needed local currency (back to XOF (CFA) again) and tried several bank ATM’s with no success. Usual problem of ATM not working but the card has yet to get stuck in the machine. 5th time lucky after Allen getting grumpy at the security guards and parking. More lorries on the roads but less cars and motorbikes. One diversion through a large busy market town due to road works and the side roads were a challenge. Going off the main road means unpredictable tracks and surfaces but all the vehicles seem to manage. Long 6 hour drive today as the hotel booked was one hour on from the town it was meant to be in. The hotel was new and admitted there was an error in their address/location and google maps was no help. Lovely hotel staff and service. Despite the heat of the day, we took a tour around the largest catholic Basilica ‘Our lady of Peace’ in the world – stunning building. The current pope has not yet arranged a visit.
To clarify upon my grumpiness, it was because they wanted me to park the car in such a way that half of a 5.3 metre long car would be sticking out into the road, which to me was dangerous. Whilst this freed up space for anyone else coming to the bank no other cars appeared the whole time I was there.
As for the basilica, this was a last minute treat. A quick Google search for things to see resulted in this popping up, and whilst I was fed up from the drive, hot and sweaty, and in need of a beer I pushed to go and see this. It was only a couple of minutes from the hotel, through a rather confusing road junction. When there, whilst they pushed a guide upon us it worked out perfectly as the chap really made our trip. It is a beautiful building, with an interesting history, a lot of care and attention put into it’s detail, and was a superb end to an otherwise hot, sticky, and long day.