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Manic Mission: An Intricate Account of a Fleeting Bundu Bash through Ten African Countries

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View Manic Mission Africa on ManicDave's travel map.


Below is the last chapter of my book which I've called

Manic Mission: An Intricate Account of a Fleeting Bundu Bash through Ten African Countries

I have updated all the blog entries above, so that they now contain exactly what's in the book.

You can download it at:


It's 5 MB, so be warned.

Please tell ALL your friends and families (or just bulk email EVERYONE in your address book) about my book and blog.

Hopefully I can get some validation and appreciation for my efforts (it was all fun, I promise)!

Over and Out

Some Book Reviews:

From Betty Yeager, CANADA
Hi Dave,

I have just finished reading your incredible story of travelling through much of Africa, and it was spellbinding!

You write very well and I was totally engrossed in your experiences. I would never have even wanted, let alone dared, to do the travelling you have done in my own youth, let alone now in my senior years.

From my safe and cosy perch in Canada I simply marvelled at the hardships, fun, dangers, beauty, adventures, you experienced on your journey through Africa and told us about so well. My own few journeys were mainly in Europe--safe, beautiful days admiring the beauty of the various arts, museums and ancient buildings, enjoying the food and wines of various European countries, and certainly nothing like what you have experienced! My only experience in Africa was in Morocco, and that was enough of a culture shock for me to realize I wasn't a traveller like you so obviously are, but merely a tourist curious to explore other cultures mostly like my own, and I discovered I really wasn't comfortable in a Muslim country and seeing such poverty amongst the great wealth of the upper regime. Here in Canada we have no ancient buildings, and very few foreigners who still wear their traditional garb, although Canada is a multicultural country. Immigrants here mostly tend to blend into our society sooner or later, so Morocco was a huge shock to me and sometimes I was afraid for my safety. It really bothered me to see the women working in the fields, often carrying their babies on their backs while working with their primitive hoes and rakes to plant the crops, while the men lazed around together and drank their mint tea and then perched on their camels to go home while their women walked behind them...an amazing reality of life there compared to my western country.

Now that I am finished reading about your african adventures I doubt that anything else I read about others' adventures in far more civilized countries will ever be as thrilling as yours.

I wish you the best of luck and pleasure on your next and every other journey you take.


From Sarah Heddon, USA


Vipi bwana?! This is Sarah, the wazimu Swahili student from Milimani
guest house in Lamu, Kenya. Forrest, my traveling buddy, sent this
along via Jen. Wow. Asante sana. Thank you so much for sharing this
and for embarking upon this journey in general.

Once I began reading, I couldn't stop and found myself incredibly
homesick for Africa, all the different Africas you experienced and
described. Along with homesickness, I felt extremely inspired by your
tenacity and ability to execute this trip and general amazement and
fascination by the width and depth of your experiences.

I enjoyed your sense of humor immensely and found myself in various fits
of uncontrollable laughter, mainly because I've been in similar
situations or could imagine them. You portrayed the corruption,
poverty, and heartache pretty adequately and honestly, but what most
impressed me was the equally poignant descriptions of the incredible
beauty, intelligence, passions, and potential of people in these places.
I truly appreciate this and have so much respect for you as a
journalist! Dang. Amazing.

From one wanderer to another, keep pursuing this type of work, as your
talent, drive, and ability to hang off the sides of taxis or matatus and
take pics will truly “take you places.”



Excerpt from Blog: Sunday February 11th 2007.

So I finally made it home - in one piece.
I have gone straight back to work and will be updating all the missing stories and pictures over the coming weeks.
Over the past few days I have been rapidly "de-Africanizing". My hairstyle has gone from multi-colored braids, to wiry dirty dreadlock-thingies, to a general untidy mess, and I am contemplating shaving it all off (I’m still undecided about the fate of my tri-colored beard - some people actually quite like it!)
This morning I looked at my Michelin 955 Southern and East Africa Map which I placed on my empty bedroom wall. I wasn't sure if I should put it back on the wall, as it had been on several walls for several years. I didn't realise how much of Africa I had covered and the exact nature of my achievements, until I stuck pieces of prestik at all my stops and joined the dots with black cotton. I measured the lengths and it turns out that:
I traveled 22,500 km in 75 days averaging 300km per day.
Busses, Trains, Cars, Planes and Ferries took me to destinations most people don't even dream of.
I spent less than $2000 averaging $30 per day
I slept an average of 4 hours per night!
I cannot explain the amount of data that my mind has absorbed - I am still processing it all and the slides I just got developed take me right back to those special unforgettable moments.
Some travelers I met along the way send me emails explaining how much they miss Africa. I tell them I'm still in Africa, but that I miss them and the Africa we enjoyed together.
Thank you all for your kind wishes and continued support - I wouldn't feel as guilty as I do
(for not updating the site regularly enough) if it weren't for you lot.
If you have contact details of anyone that knows me (from my travels or otherwise), or anyone who may be interested in my travels, then please forward them a link ( http://www.travelpod.com/members/dcm ) to my travel blog or better yet, send me their details. Over and Out.
David, Dahoodi, Dawie, Daveeed, Mzungu, Wazimu, Cheezi, Clinton Marcus

20 years ago I used to write the same line at the end of my school essays:
I hope you have enjoyed reading this as much as I have enjoyed writing it!

What else can I say?

You’ve (hopefully) read the entire thing instead of just looking at the pictures
(I purposely didn’t give them captions).
Africa is ………… Africa.
People keep asking me “How was Africa?” and I don’t know how to answer them.
I could come up with hundreds of fancy adjectives to explain it, but I think my experiences I have explained above, along with their accompanying pictures speak for themselves.
I spent six months planning, one month preparing, three months executing and two months documenting my journey.

My initial planning was both precise and unrealistic. For the first six weeks I was pretty much on target. After that circumstances dictated otherwise. Accommodation options either no longer existed or were too expensive. I met other people who I enjoyed travelling with. I got invites. I could stay for free.
I tried to make up for time and stick to my original plan as much as humanly possible. I think I did a pretty good job – considering all the warnings I had before I left.

Other Manic Missions will follow, no doubt. I’m currently planning 52 Countries in as many weeks – around the world! A motorbike would be nice, but probably too expensive and with all the shit I’d carry I would definitely break a few bones on the way. Public transport will probably be the best bet and I have already bought myself a smaller backpack!

My initial routing for the RTW trip:

South America (7)
January: Brazil, Uruguay, Argentina
February: Chile, Peru, Ecuador, Colombia
Central America (5)
March: Panama, Costa Rica, Nicaragua, Honduras, Guatemala
North America (3)
April: Mexico, United States of America, Canada
Far East Asia (8)
May: Russia, Japan, South Korea, China
June: Taiwan, Philippines, Malaysia, Thailand
South Asia (5)
July: Myanmar, Bangladesh, India, Pakistan, Iran
Europe (3)
August: Turkey, Greece, Italy
North Africa (5)
September: Tunisia, Algeria, Morocco, Mauritania, Senegal,
West Africa (11)
October: The Gambia, Guinea-Bissau, Guinea, Côte D’Ivoire, Ghana
November: Togo, Benin, Nigeria, Cameroon, Equatorial Guinea, Gabon
Southern Africa (5)
December: Congo, DRC, Angola, Namibia, South Africa

If anyone has any advice about or contacts in the above 52 countries, please let me know and tell them I'm coming!!! Better yet give me their e-mail and physical address so they can feed and house me, or else I'm never going to make it around the world on $7,500

Donations and sponsors will be greatly appreciated (& very necessary). You can reach me at manicmissions@gmail.com

Kingsley Holgate, Ted Simon, Ewan McGregor, Charley Boorman and Messrs Theroux:
I’m following in your footsteps!

The End

Posted by ManicDave 06:14 Archived in South Africa Tagged backpacking Comments (0)

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