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Good news

Supply-Camp — 2000-07-30

Jo and Tom take their leave after breakfast, in order to reconnoiter the way to Yalgoo. Tanja sorts the supply sacks 3 and 4, which we had left with Jo and Tom before beginning the expedition. The responsibility of splitting the 200 kg of food into weekly portions is huge. As usual, I suffer from extreme back pain and get Tanja to wrench me back into shape before I sit down in front of the computer. It cracks loudly but brings instant relief and I hope that the vertebra are back in the correct position once more, then I limp over to my bush office, sit down in the fold-out chair, put the laptop on my knee and begin hacking away at the keys.

Jo and Tom are full of energy as they return this evening ‘We have good news for you Denis!’ Tom says. ‘Yeh? What? I can’t wait to hear it’ I answer him. Jo comes to the fire and tells us that they didn’t come across one cattle grid without a gate the whole 130 km that they drove to the north. ‘What? That’s absolutely fantastic!’ I cry in relief and almost perform a dance of joy, except that my back hurts too much. Jo then gives me a couple of drawings that she and Tom made of the way ahead, and I am exhilarated to see that they’ve left nothing of importance out. The notes include such things as distances in kilometers, positions of camel food and camping spots, gold mines, fences, cattle grids, gates next to the grids and even a picture of how to cross over fences easier. ‘You should bind the fence wires together with a piece of wire on either side of the planned point of crossing, then you only have one thick fence wire on the ground instead of five. Then you should lay a dead branch over this wire, you know that camels have no fear of stepping over branches and they will cross then without a problem. This way you wont have to bury all the wires under the ground’ Jo explains to us in her typically kind way. I’m stumped ‘What a fantastic idea!’ I cry. My back pain has all but disappeared due to my joy at the good news.
As darkness falls, we enjoy a dinner of lamb cutlets, chicken breast in garlic sauce, foiled pumpkin and buttered toast. All this is washed down with a couple of beers and topped with some of Jo’s home made bush cake with vanilla sauce. As you can imagine, the evening is perfect.

Day: 80

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