So I got a phone call on Friday "Senor P, wanna go to Angola?" Sure what the hell. As for what part of Angola, I rather not say. It is not the capital, Luanda. I'll be working in a man camp so I don't have to deal with the rampant price issues that go on in the capital. So goons, what can you tell me about Angola?
|# ? Jun 1, 2014 01:11|
|# ? Jun 17, 2019 22:45|
I went through there as part of an overland tour in March 2013. We didn't spend any time in Luanda. Here are some things I remember, having quickly looked through my photos and journal:
-The weather was hot, but not bad... It was a big relief from the jungle malarial heat farther north. It rained pretty frequently, especially at night.
-Relatively few people spoke English or French. Lots of people spoke Portuguese, of course.
-There are signs of war all over the place, especially in small towns. Blown up or crashed cars, abandoned tanks, bullet holes in abandoned store fronts and old walls, collapsed churches. Actually, speaking of cars, every time we'd go down a steep hill, you'd see at least one crashed car or truck that had lost control, crashed, and been left to rust next to the road. You would see signs with messages like "CHECK YOUR BRAKES" with a skull on it and know that there would be at least one car burned out on its roof ahead.
-Many of the towns we visited seemed very sleepy and trapped in time, a bit like parts of Cuba can be. I visited a post office in Namibe that looked half abandoned: a lot of things had been ripped out and taken from the grand old building, with dust collecting almost everywhere. The employees were startled to see me and had to get a big book of regulations out to figure out how to stamp my post cards home. Other larger towns were as chaotic and busy as many of the towns in Africa are.
-The Chinese are everywhere. It seemed like 75% of the roads we drove on were being torn up and rebuilt by Chinese workers. There are huge Chinese enclaves near Luanda and in some other areas.
-There are some areas of the coast that have eroded away into beautiful multicoloured moonscapes. We stopped at one south of Luanda. I think it's about here:
-Angola has a hugely varied landscape. Sometimes it would seem like the landscape would totally change hour to hour: we'd go from a marshy area to a rocky arid area, and then to a range of rolling grassy hills. I really enjoyed driving around Angola.
-There's a massive set of switchbacks between Namibe and Lubango that's really impressive. It takes you down an incredible distance. It's here on Google maps:
I hope some of that is helpful to you! Enjoy your trip.
|# ? Jun 1, 2014 12:29|