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During my travels newspaper columns were published weekly in the Dutch daily newspaper
Dutch newspaper Spits

This project has been supported by these great and warmhearted companies:
Netherlands: Paping Buitensport, ODLO, IPtower.nl, AVRO Dutch Broadcasting Org., Travelcare, TunaFish, Book A Tour, StadsRadio Rotterdam; UK: Lazystudent, KissFM, The Sunday Times, The Guardian; Isle of Man: SteamPacket/SeaCat; Ireland: BikeTheBurren; Belgium: Le Temps Perdu, Majer & PartnersAustria: OhmTV.com; Norway: Scanrail Pass, Hurtigruten, Best Western HotelsSouth Africa: eTravel, British Airways Comair, CapeTalk, BazBus Spain: Inter Rail, Train company Renfe; Australia: Channel 9 Television, Bridgeclimb, Harbourjet, SeaFM Central Coast, Moonshadow Cruises, Australian Zoo, Fraser Island Excursions, Hamilton Island Resort, FantaSea Cruises, Greyhound/McCafferty's Express Coaches, Aussie Overlanders, TravelAbout.com.au, Travelworld, Unlimited Internet, Kangaroo Island SeaLink, Acacia Apartments; Malaysia: Aircoast; Canada: VIA rail, Cedar Springs Lodge, BCTV/GlobalTV, St. George Hotel, VICKI GABEREAU talkshow, Ziptrek Ecotours, Whitler Blackcomb Ski Resort, Summit Ski & Snowboard Rental, High Mountain BrewHouse, Cougar Mountain Snowmobiling, Whistler Question Newspaper, Snowshoe Inn, First Air, Nunanet.com, Canadian North Accommodations by the Sea, DRL Coachlines Newfoundland, The National Post and Air North.


Reports

Thursday, 15 November 2001
East London --> Gonubie (SA)

Michel Muller, my next hostess, picked me up at the backpacker's lodge in East London and took me home to here place. It was a day for interviews again, and the alcohol joined in too, as one charming (!) reporter invited everybody to go out this night...
After waking up in my dorm, Fred served me millie pap and eggs on toast for breakfast.

It was time to go on my leave again, as my next hostess would come to pick me up at Niki-Nana’s.

It was Michel Muller, a property columnist for the Daily Dispatch, who had invited me to her home with the Bed & Breakfast called RolyPolys Pay&Stayin Gonubie, just 20km north of East London (where Linda and Fred drove me around yesterday too).

Michel Muller is a very active person. She once initiated the first political Women Party of South Africa and is very involved in protecting gay rights.

She lives lives with her friend Sobhna Poona in a big house and got the idea to start a B&B in a low-profile township style, without luxuries. Today I would be her official first guest and she was very excited to have this Flying Dutchman visiting her place.

After I settled in my room with a two-persons bed, I was interviewed by another reporter of the Dispatch, the talented Ceridwen Morris. A photographer took me up the road to shoot me hitchhiking on the streets of Gonubie.

I had a very interesting conversation with Ceridwen. She already got most information about me and my project off this website and asked me more about me and how I seem to handle myself during this all. I like that, because it gives me the opportunity to think about my answers, in stead of telling the same old story again and again. And I must say that her charms also worked well on my talkativity.

After the interview I joined Michel and two good friends of her, Chris and Heidi, in the ‘cafe’ part of the house. Ceridwen came up with the idea of going out tonight and to come all to the Buccaneers pub in East London and that sounded all very good to the young ones in the house. We were in for a night out and arranged that we would all meet up again around 8pm at Bucc’s. Michel would stay at home as she would have some more business to do.

The housekeeper of RolyPolys Pay&Stay, Florence Noncokoca (who lives in the nearby squatted camp), prepared us umngqusho for dinner. Umngqusho is samp with beans, with onions, tomatoes and lamb neck. It basically is a very South African staple diet – along with millie pap.

It was during dinner when Michel got a phonecall for me. The Canadian Broadcasting Company, the CBC, wanted a short interviw with me for the popular Radio 1 show Basic Black, hosted by Arthur Black.

So I had an interesting chat with this fellow about a possible future visit to Canada, but of course I can’t get there without the help of a sponsor…

After dinner, which was really belly filling for me, it was already getting close to 8pm and I joined Chris and Heidi in their car for a night out at Buccaneers, one of the favourite places to go out in East London.

And what started with a few ciders for me and beers for Chris and Heidi (thanks pals!), turned into a night of proper used alcoholism (thanks again, pals!). Yes, also Ceridwen joined us with some friends of her.Mich

Chris became the guy so drunk that he started telling everybody about what I am doing, leaving the people behind with open mouths, staring at me.

I had some great talks with Ceridwen while her friends were fuelling us with tequila shooters. And she really is an interesting lady. She wants to become a carpenter for a change of life. But she also wants to travel.

Voila! “Why not start up letmebeyourcarpenterforamonth.com?” I suggested. It’s a long name, but if you can travel and work on things for a month with free accomodation… That’s what the world should do more: work together.

Know the costs of money and the value of all the other things around us. (okay, okay, the tequila was starting to work!)

It was around 1 at night when sober Heidi drove us back home to RolyPolys Pay&Stay where I got into my room, soon to be discovered by Heidin and the super drunk Chris. We found out that the bed could not really take three people, so Chris took a sheet and crashed somewhere on the floor while Heidi fell asleep next to me. And believe me, we were completely knocked out. Here comes the hangover!

Good... night Gonubie!

Ramon.



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