Madness takes its toll
For months it’s been a battle to get the driver to leave the road to meet up with me, or even to drive 100m into the bush to a decent camp site. The thought seemed to send into a sweaty frenzy of fear at what might lurk there. So bad is his fear, that for the entire journey he has slept in the 4×4. Some days it would bake in 40% sun, as night falls, in he would get, close all the windows, and lock the doors and sauna the night away.
The second last day of the island run seemed to suddenly bring on new energy and bravery as well as a desire to drive to the end of the island, where no road existed, one would need and amphibious craft to get there. The intent was strong. Rounding a bend I heard the scream of tyres on rock and the whine of a revving engine. There I saw the massive land cruiser with its tail hanging over a bridge, one back wheel on rocks, and the belly flat on the bridge and front wheels just managing to scratch away at the mud, much like a tortoise stuck on a stone. He and the co-driver were trying some insane stunts to get it off, the driver never once gets out to see what’s happening, just sits there, foot flat on the gas shouting instructions as the vehicle slowly revs and screams in a motion looking like he is try to rock himself to sleep. “Don’t try and give any advice”.
Finally after some 10 minutes, I heard the vehicle behind me, some miracle must have happened. On he went, passing me with a wave and a yeh yeh I can do it look as he clenched the steering wheel grated his teeth and headed on down the muddy road. The hills were now rolling and I could see swamps appearing in the distance, kms in length, large stretches of mud were visible as the tide was out, a beautiful sight of mangrove trees and thousand of dead sticks protruding catching the morning light. In the distance I could see someone walking the swamp, waving as he went. I looked again; it was the co driver, what he was doing there. A rather unusual sight. Then it hit me, No I screamed, he was waving the driver on. I ran up behind him shouting don’t don’t, All I got was the royal wave as he revved the beast and headed into the massive muddy mangrove swamp.
He hit the mud at full speed, shooting a rooster tail of slush behind him, sliding left and right he skidded across the mud in semi circular curves he cut his way in deeper and deeper, slowly losing momentum as he spun his way to glory finally he beached the whale. But alas no, he did not stop at that. He continued the rev and dig his way in. If that was not enough, the reverse lights went on and he continued to dig the vehicle in until its belly was nice and firmly resting in the mud. He had now turned his home into a house boat.