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Dear Diary:

6th October 2005  -  The Road to Brasilia

My original plan in South America never included visiting Venezuela, Guyana, Suriname and French Guiana, but before I knew it I had spent 6 weeks in them! It was a wonderful time, but unfortunately something had to be sacrificed. I decided that the something was to be the coast of Brazil. So from French Guiana I decided to head direct overland to the capital of Brasilia to collect my national flag.

She looks a bit old! It was a long bloody trip!

A bad sign! The first leg was from the border town of Oiapoque south to the Brazilian city on the Equator, Macapa. The distance is listed as 530km or so and about 2/3rds of the road is dirt, so the buses that do the trek are of the older variety! It was not the best sign when the bus driver had to borrow a screw diver from a passing car to take the dash broad apart to get the lights functioning at sun set.

At about 9pm we were overtaking a slow vehicle with any tail lights. Just as we pulled out, our bus hit a large object (I assume a rock) and the complete left side suspension gave way. A bit of a lean! Believe me the the suspension bars on the bus were not small or weak - Look closly at far side suspension in the photo and you will see how bad the damage was! The bus lurched very heavily left and the cabin filled with smoke and it was clear that panic had started to set in and as the bus slowed people were even jumping out of the windows! IŽll be honest and say I was not to worried my self, it was just going to be another delay!

Any way, to just a long story short, the bus was dead dead You little beauty! deadski! Various sections of the bus dispersed over the next 6 hours until the replacement bus arrived at 3am. I slept with a German father and daughter on the front porch of a deserted house. IŽll be honest and say that I was amazed that a replacement bus was sent - We were told nothing and the nearest phone was 4 hours drive away! Well done Brazil transport I stand corrected!

Made it at last!!! We eventually arrived in Macapa, but unfortunately the ferry that day for Belem was broken down, so I decided not to hang around and get a cheap fight over the amazon to the city of Belem. (it was far to expensive to fly all the way to Brasilia). Nothing like sitting in an airport for hours for a 2am departure. Still, it was cheap...

32hrs on a bus!  Fun Fun Fun! From Belem I did a lovely 33hour bus ride direct to Brasilia! The bus was not that old and despite the duration, it went quickly. I got to see some lovely scenery that is some what like Australia in the area we drove and even a nice sun set.

Any way, I eventually arrived in Brasilia after about 4 days The Girls in the Flag shop. and 3 nights. To say I was rather bushed at that point is an understatement, but hey I made it! Best of all I had more lovely help in finding my national flag and checked out a few sights.

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