05 Mar 2008
Recco (Italy) - Civitavecchia (Italy ferry port)
Our final punt to the ferry. Had a great continental breakfast and the feisty Italian lady filled up our flask and jerry cans with water. It was an uneventful drive from Genoa to Civitavecchia. We tried to visit the leaning tower of Pisa and saw it from the motorway but got lost in the maze of one way streets and the Italian driving chaos so had to abandon the search and press on. Another stop and a supermarket saw us stock up on pasta sauces and emergency western meals for the trip. We had the best Italian pizza ever in a fantastic local restaurant by the port before boarding our average sized ferry at 11pm! It was a little scruffy but be both spread out on 3 seats each to get some sleep.
6 Mar 2008
Civitavecchia (Italy ferry port) - La Goulette (Tunisia)
I only woke at 10am and was not feeling too bad at this stage but as soon as we started to move about Bruce got the first signs of seasickness. We must have been in the middle of the med and the sea was very choppy! I too started to feel sick and after taking 2 seasick pills we both could do nothing out but be horizontal for the rest of the 18 hour crossing! We finally arrived in Tunis at 5:30pmand found it positively freezing, wet and windy! Driving Ubhejane off the ferry and onto African soil we felt like our trip had really started.
We joined the cue for police clearance and when we got to the window were told that we needed a visa. No problem, the man took our passports and disappeared!! After a little driving around we found him again and they started processing our visas. We needed 2 passport photos, that we had, and 20 TD that we didn't have. Bruce went to the bank and changed money while I stayed with the passports. After a short while we had our visas and it was off to get the car cleared through customs. We drove around and were met by an annoying little fixer and Bruce had to eventually shut himself in the car to fill out the forms. Got that done and after a short search…'you have any whiskey' it was off to get our stamp. 'Ah no, we have a problem' was the remark from the man when he saw our visa. For some reason we had only been given a 7 day transit visa. A problem as we were going to be in Tunisia for 13 days! Back to the police and we were told this was no problem, you can stay 1 month. So we took the police man to the customs man and were stamped in. Bought 3rd party insurance and were free to go into Africa. We decided to overnight at hotel Amilcar which we had a waypoint for and new had secure parking. 70TD for dinner bed and breakfast! A perfect welcome stop in what used to be a grand looking hotel with a worn OTT look. Another warm nights sleep - possible our last in style. Now our trip really feels like it's started. AFRICA HERE WE COME!